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From the New York Times:

Coronavirus Live Updates: White House and Congress Reach $2 Trillion Stimulus Deal
The legislation, which will send direct payments and jobless benefits to individuals, is the biggest economic stimulus package in modern American history.

RIGHT NOW President Trump wants the U.S. “opened up” by Easter, as fleeing New Yorkers are urged to self-quarantine.
新冠病毒疫情最新消息

Here’s what you need to know:
Senators and White House strike deal on stimulus package.
Trump wants U.S. “opened up” by Easter, as fleeing New Yorkers are urged to self-quarantine.
Stocks surge on promise of a bailout as companies and workers navigate the crisis.
Innovators race to help as hospitals plead for equipment.
Catch up: Here’s what else is happening around the world.
Employee who crossed paths with Mike Pence at FEMA headquarters has tested positive.
India’s prime minister decreed a 21-day lockdown for the country of 1.3 billion.

Okay …

Here’s a question: did any country have an economic plan ahead of time for what to do?

Britain had a public health plan for how to deal with a pandemic, but it also seemed to bog them down when the actual pandemic didn’t exactly match the assumptions in their plan.

Here’s a list of EU health plans.

But did any country have a plan for what to do about the economy if everybody had to stay indoors? Maybe Denmark?

Are there any science fiction novels about the duller stuff like how to deal with mortgages and the like?

 
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  1. Blubb says:

    All debt payments need to be suspended for six months, with landlords passing the savings on to their renters.

    We helped the banks, it’s payback time

    • Agree: Jonathan Mason
  2. Is this $1200 an actual gift, or am I just going to owe $1200 on my taxes next year?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @Regret
    , @MarkinPNW
  3. Ron Unz says:

    Actually, I wonder whether Trump will really go ahead with that proposal…

    Easter Sunday is April 12th, 18 days from now.

    If you consider the implied rate of current infections based upon current death-rates, you get some interesting results:

    https://www.unz.com/runz/correctly-estimating-coronavirus-infections/

    For example, I think roughly 200,000 to 250,000 NY residents are currently infected, a figure vastly higher than the official total. If that’s the case, I wouldn’t be surprised if the New York death rate has reached 500 per day by Easter, perhaps even 1,000 per day. Indeed, if the local health system has collapsed by then, those might be major underestimates.

    If 1,000 New Yorkers are dying each day by Easter, maybe even Trump’s Wall Street friends will try to persuade him to change his mind about ending the national lockdown…

  4. @Ron Unz

    Trump is an optimist, he’s not planning on doing this, he just would really like to, and is encouraging others to think it will end soon.

  5. Don’t you mean

    中国病毒爆发新闻

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  6. LondonBob says:

    Trump’s businesses are uniquely exposed. The number of likely infected in a number of countries mean we are not that far off from herd immunity, or indeed at a significant level that the number of new cases will be manageable. Trump is probably a little over eager, but only by a few weeks.

    • Disagree: Rob
  7. nebulafox says:

    The “9 dollar per house code wallahs handling 737 software is no problem” crowd at Boeing is getting a bailout, of course… Can’t think of more deserving people.

    Read the fine print. Listen to Larry Kudlow. Six trillion dollars. With that money, every single American could have 2300 per month for a whole year. But much of that money has to fund further tax cuts for big corporations, of course. Silly peasants, all that stuff about having a six month emergency fund is for Little People. Your Betters are so busy moving money around for The Economy, they didn’t have time to have a one month emergency fund.

    So, on one hand, we have a party focused on making sure the bonuses for irresponsible CEO screwups are unmolested while taking every step to cut unemployment insurance. On the other, a party who is happy to gamble a few peasant lives so that they can force their (sans nuclear of course) pods and bugs green ideological fantasies at a time of profound crisis.

    This is how the Republic dies.

    • Agree: RadicalCenter
    • Thanks: Federalist
  8. Anonymous[305] • Disclaimer says:

    OK.

    1) Naipul’s Bend in the River is a famous and more or less conventional novel about what happens when a country hits a challenge and loses. Essentially, government pretends that it can do something about the challenge. It then, on all levels, proceeds to steal and appropriate everything it can because its members believe they will need these things during the disorganize time after the civil economy contracts. Those who have something to take are blamed for the challenge.

    2) The Andrew Moriarty book Orbital Claims Adjuster was apparently written by somebody with a background in commercial shipping, which is almost entirely about meeting bills (ships being holes in the water into which one shovels money). It uses a “lost colony” theme — the colony has light industry but not heavy, so it heavy capital is depreciating, but its economy depends on orbital industry to provide both living area and resources. The sole planet in the system will not be habitable for another 200 or so years.
    Essentially, everybody tries to pretend that things are stable while various abuses (reappearance of indentured servants, not called that, reduction of food to less palatable forms, development of an incompetent hereditary management class, farmers forced off the land as the capital plant to support transportation wears out) reappear. An entire ecosystem of people living as very poor small steaders appears. The larger organizations fight one another, clandestinely during the first novel, for raw materials. Entertaining read that gives some perspective.

    3) As I understand things, the USSR failure simply involved a general decline in living standards (as money grew increasingly worthless) that killed quite a few people through stresses during old age and attempts to flee into various drugs (primarily alcohol) by those whose niche in the USSR’s economy vanished with that economy. And, of course, a demographic problem as people didn’t have children or cared for them poorly. This was actually a much more favorable outcome then devolution into local warfare.

    Which is just life. Sometimes you eat the bear, sometimes the bear eats you.

    • Replies: @The Alarmist
  9. Are there any science fiction novels about the duller stuff like how to deal with mortgages and the like?

    UK banks are currently offering 3-month mortgage holidays to anyone that needs them. Naturally, your debt continues to accrue interest over that period, you just don’t need to make payments.

    Good luck spinning that into a sci-fi novel.

  10. But did any country have a plan for what to do about the economy if everybody had to stay indoors?

    In the long, dark northern winter, everybody stays indoors anyway.

  11. unit472 says:

    Prince Charles has it!

    • Replies: @Joe Magarac
  12. Polynikes says:

    These bailouts are always a shitshow. But taking the total number of dollars and dividing it by 350 million people and saying “every citizen could have gotten a check for X dollars instead,” is silly.

    At the end of the day, there has to be jobs to come back to. Businesses that run on sub-10% margins can’t sit out a month or more. And giant corps disproportionately affect thousands of other businesses down the supply chain.

    The devil is in the details, and I’m quite sure if you look closely enough the average citizen is getting a disproportionately lesser cut than business. We always do. I think it is bullshit just like you guys. But if I’m honest, I also have to say that I have a hard time blaming executives for not foreseeing a month long shutdown based on a combination of a legit threat of some unknown magnitude, a TDS afflicted media fueled panic, and a general public that’s lost it’s damn mind. Even cash rich companies will start cutting their employees lose after a few weeks.

    Too big to fail is apparently here to stay and should be the next economic public policy our best minds tackle. By the next crisis every industry in America will have their snout at the bailout trough. After all, why shouldn’t the guys in tech, oil, ag, and bio-sciences get some free money too?

  13. What would happen if 7,500 people starting dying each day? Oh wait, that happens now from all other causes.

    Why so much hate for poor little coronavirus. It’s like we’re living in a simulation of weirdness, I really don’t get the obsession. 88 year olds with underlying health conditions have a hard time with this virus? You don’t say.

    • Agree: Je Suis Omar Mateen
    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    , @XYZ (no Mr.)
  14. Are there any science fiction novels about the duller stuff like how to deal with mortgages and the like?

    You stop the bankruptcy domino effect by giving the banks unlimited lines of credit at the Fed. That’s the “bank bailouts” that prompt people to ask “Where’s my bailout?”

  15. @Reg Cæsar

    Nice picture! I’m sure you realize though that under normal circumstances, even when most life takes place indoors, there’s visiting. The hard thing now isn’t the indoors it’s the social isolation.

    • Replies: @Thoughts
    , @jbwilson24
  16. Anonymous[277] • Disclaimer says:

    The crucial metric here is ‘destruction of productive capacity’ – that is the ability of the means of production to elastically rebound after the shock to the system. By and large this is dependent on corporate solvency, the classic recessions and depressions that plague highly capitalized market economies are nearly always down to governments raising interest rates, in attempts to limit inflation or currency depreciation, which basically rips up the corporate sector from within, as highly geared companies are in urgent need of extra cash.

    The difference this time is we are seeing merely an ‘enforced leave of absence’, more of ‘putting the corporate world on ice’ rather fiscally motivated destruction. Hence, there is every reason to believe that once consumer demand returns and cash gets spent – including the backlog – capitalism will do what capitalism does, and will start spinning the wheel again.

    Notice how the main casualty this time around is the nonsense economy – rubbish which incessantly lectured is the ‘future’ of the western world, no vital bullshit such as fast food, nail bars, pubs etc etc. Although they might employ workers – on rubbish wages – it’s a truism to say that from a productive potential point of view, that crap will not be missed.

    • Replies: @Anon
  17. Realist says:
    @Ron Unz

    If you consider the implied rate of current infections based upon current death-rates, you get some interesting results:

    Current death-rates are inaccurate.

  18. Anonymous[277] • Disclaimer says:
    @Ron Unz

    The pertinent question here is, of course, is what we know of the demographic makeup of the generality of the NYC population – and their character, behavior and disposition when faced with sudden hardship an self sacrifice.

    The awful example of Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans doesn’t bode well.

  19. I am guessing that Pelosi got some bad private polling results.

    OT I hope somebody who matters picks up on this very soon:

  20. Heres a related question-

    What happened to the billions (trillions?) spent on homeland security and biosecurity since 2001?

    I was peripherally involved in the response to H1N1 in 2009. At that time, we received guidance from the CDC – the nation had millions of stockpiled flu masks and other equipment (I DONT believe ventilators, I remember there being concern then about this).

    I cant believe everything just evaporated in the 3 years of Trump admin – but if it did, we should know now.

    It’s easier for me to believe that it was combined problem over Trump/Obama years, or that maybe we were misled all along about the efficacy of preparations. (Ya think?)

    Anyway ,- what happened to all the blank checks we wrote for Homeland Security over the last 20 years?

  21. Anonymous[367] • Disclaimer says:

    Maybe Trump meant Eastern Orthodox Easter April 19th

    • Replies: @Hibernian
  22. Enochian says:

    If they’d had competent health care plans in place, they wouldn’t need economic plans. The first and most efficient by far component of the economic plan would be ‘invest more in the health care plan’.

  23. Anonymous[841] • Disclaimer says:

    I ask myself, how long these measures will last? It seems, that they are thought to last something like 4 months? But, if the curve of infections flattens enough, how long it will lasts? More than a year until a successful vaccine ?

  24. @nebulafox

    This is how the Republic dies.

    I agree with you, N.B. on the moral hazard of bailouts to Big-Biz. However, it’s the same for anyone getting loans forgiven, rent waived and any of that Socialist crap. The mindset for all us responsible people will slowly change to “there’s no point in saving, no point in going to college on a frugal budget, no point in being a good tenant… no point in doing ANYTHING in a responsible manner”.

    Now THAT is how a Republic HAS BEEN dying. Oh, and that $6,000,000,000,000 – it adds to the $23,000,000,000,000 in national debt, bringing us up against the 30 Trillion dollar mark. If you figure roughly 100,000,000 families that actually pay out taxes, that works out to $300,000 each. Do you think there’s any way that can be paid, besides being “paid” in money that has been hyperinflated to peanuts (perhaps that’s the real plan).

    Oh, and right now the Feral Government pays only just over 1% net interest on this current $23 Trillion. It’s right there at the back of the virtual tax book, along with the pie chart that shows interest payments being 6% of outlays. Imagine if the FED didn’t force interest rates into the basement. At a more natural rate of 7%, we’re talking ~ 40% of the budget outlays being interest, oops without going from 23 to 30 Trillion. WAIT, don’t go away, NebulaFox – it gets worse! That’s a percentage of outlays, but even on a normal year the revenue collected is around 3/4 of that. Interest on this $30 Trillion debt would take over 1/2 of all revenue to pay, without paying down any principle.

    This is what some people would call *unsustainable*. This former Republic is unsustainable.

    • Replies: @nebulafox
    , @Neil Templeton
  25. @Ron Unz

    It appears there’s a number of off-label drugs that can be used in conjunction with chloroquine to stop respiratory arrest and allow the patient to recover w/o the need of a ventilator.

    So, assuming moderate social distancing helps to slow the spread among the non-vulnerable population, and the vulnerable population (1 or more co-morbid factors) engage in strong social distancing, perhaps getting back to semi-normal by Easter won’t result in mass casualties.

  26. @Ron Unz

    Agree and agree again. I find your rough data projections more convincing than those offered up by the establishment. And too, Trump, obviously, has been “gotten to” by the big banks and hedge funds. And finally, as the death toll continues to rise, there is no way any person of conscience or common sense will condone lifting all the quarantine restrictions.

  27. @Reg Cæsar

    Northern winter night as seen by coronavirus victim.

    • LOL: lavoisier
  28. Meanwhile, in France….

    French Province Bans Sale of Alcohol During Coronavirus Lockdown

    The prefect of Aisne, Ziad Khoury, announced Tuesday that alcohol is no longer to be sold, citing ties between alcohol and violence. “Excessive consumption of alcohol is likely to create increased disturbances and violence, especially within the family,” he said.

    Dafuq?

    • Replies: @Redneck farmer
    , @Rapparee
  29. Kman says:

    Spend spend spend

    The plan is always the same

    In good times governments overspend

    In bad times governments still overspend

  30. @Ron Unz

    How many of these deaths will be the consequences of diversity is our strength and affirmative action?

  31. @Smithsonian_2

    Actually, I just remembered a sci-fi yarn that does cover long-term accumulated debt.

  32. So, 1200 per person is what it looks like, and based on 2018 taxes. So if you happened to make a killing in 2019 when the market was up, or recently made a killing shorting the market, you’re home free as long as you made less than 150k in 2018. But if you were doing well in 2018 and have hit hard times only recently, then you are out of luck. The more sensible alternative would have been to send everyone a check in 2019, and then have those over the income threshold pay it back when they file their 2020 returns. Of course, that would have made too much sense.

    • Replies: @The Alarmist
  33. The plan should be this:

    The government maintains a “strategic stockpile” of masks, enough to provide 100 or so to every person. When something like COVID-19 turns up, a hundred masks are sent to every person. After a few days, it becomes illegal to go outside your dwelling unless you are wearing a mask and it is covering both your mouth and your nose. When the president goes on TV to declare a health emergency, he wears a mask. News anchors and reporters wear masks. Some places will have to shut down: restaurant dining rooms, sporting events (you can’t play basketball in a mask), etc. But to a significant extent, life can go on.

    Of course, we should also do testing and contact tracing, maybe limit travel from certain areas or do quarantining, but lockdowns and semi-lockdowns should not be necessary.

  34. Anon[659] • Disclaimer says:

    The 1200 check to those making less than 70K is smaller than I expected, but it will be useful.

    As for Trump’s thinking, according to Chinese data, those who are the most feeble (nursing home types with co-morbidities that it’s not possible to save), tend to die the first week they get Covid-19. So you have a soaring death rate the first week, but it will start dropping over time because the remaining people left over will be patients who are more robust. I suspect Trump figures that we now know which drugs will successfully treat them, which China didn’t know about in their earliest stages, so we’ll be able to save more of these people than China did.

    Also, Trump knows the US smoking rate is way below China’s, as is our pollution rate, and we don’t have the excess of elderly people older than 80 that Italy has. Or the Italian habit of kissing cheeks to greet each other, which helped spread Covid-19 in Italy. We also have a population that by and large, lacks the mutation interferon gene that makes Han Chinese more susceptible to flu-type illnesses.

    But most importantly, despite having more than 55K cases here in the US, the death rate is 1.45%. This isn’t crazy high like Italy’s current rate of 9.85%. Yet the number of total cases in both Italy (69K) and the US (55K) are large enough by now to show the effect of macro interventions to prevent the disease. The lower US rate likely reflects the various factors mentioned above, and these are having a profound impact on our death rate. Since our death rate is being persistently low, Trump likely figures that we can risk going back to normal in a couple of weeks.

    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
  35. Maundy Thursday this year will see the soaking of the poor, Friday will be quite Good for the markets, but stock will drop later in the day when an itinerant street preacher infiltrates a virus into Wall St. money-changers, but Easter Sunday will see the most perfect resurrection of the Dow Jones Industrial Index since Biblical times.

    America will be made great again, and soon Trump will publicly ascend into heaven where he will sit at the right hand (naturally) of God from whence he shall judge the quick and the dead, whose presidency shall have no end.

  36. @Ron Unz

    The CDC website , updated 3/24/20 at 4PM lists reported cases, across all 50 states, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Ialands as 44,183 with 544 deaths total. I respect your opinions but don’t see your numbers.

  37. Is there ever an economic plan for what to do? Do such plans even work anyway? Communist “5-year plans” and such have proven to be dismal failures. Central planning does not work. Macroeconomic attempts to manage a living, complex system don’t work.

    What is laughable is how very, very few individuals keep themselves prepared financially and materially to live without help, responsible for their own lives, if the SHTF.

    The “best and brightest” have led us to this cliff by doing the following, among other things:

    > Overspending in government

    > Importing cheap labor

    > Exporting production to cheap labor overseas

    > Facilitating and approving, via the above three foolish acts, indebtedness and dependence of foreign powers.

    There never was a plan. There was only greed, stupidity and the usual garbage that has always, always driven human history.

    The money in the current proposal does not exist and cannot be paid back.

  38. The celebrity rush to get tested and the media emphasis on those tests is simply another example of the Cathedral’s upward holiness spiral.

    The celebrity tests are ripe fodder for the mass hysteria the media is promoting. The media are more than happy to gorge themselves upon it.

    • Agree: Je Suis Omar Mateen
  39. Tiny Duck says:

    Does anyone else find it VERY interesting that only predominantly “white” countries are having issues with the trumpvirus?

    It seems that Nations of Color have successfully contained and eliminated the virus (China, Japan) or prevented it altogether (Africa at large).

    What does this tell us about HBD or the assumptions of those who prescribe to HBD.

    • Replies: @Danindc
  40. Ron Unz says:
    @Buffalo Joe

    The CDC website , updated 3/24/20 at 4PM lists reported cases, across all 50 states, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Ialands as 44,183 with 544 deaths total. I respect your opinions but don’t see your numbers.

    Exponential growth curves have that property. Take another look at the death totals on that website at the end of this week.

    When people argue about the impact of Global Warming, the disputes are bitter and endless because they involve what might happen within another few decades.

    However, the Coronavirus debate involves what might happen in the next couple of months. So there’s no need for any bitterness since we’ll soon find out who’s right and who’s wrong.

    I very much hope that you and others are correct in your lack of concern. But I doubt it…

    • Agree: AaronInMVD
  41. @Buffalo Joe

    I respect your opinions but don’t see your numbers.

    Well, there you have the nub of it.

    Is this coronavirus a nasty bug that will kill off many of the people who would have died this year anyway from flu or other causes, plus a few unlucky extras who might have expected to live longer, or is it the Black Death redux, an apocalyptic epidemic with the prospect of the streets being full of piles of rotting infected corpses and whole cities being depopulated for generations to come as the pestilence stalks the land?

    Is this the end of life on this planet as we have known it?

    Clearly there is room for different points of view and at some point in time–possibly the Last Judgment– the sheep will be separated from the goats.

    We could see a real come back for religion, before this is all over. If this pandemic is declared by the insurance companies to be an Act of God, then the next step will be to offer up sacrifices in propitiation and have the Supreme Court strike down laws that offend Him and reintroduce Blasphemy Laws to keep us all on the straight and narrow.

    I can’t wait for the minseries.

    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
  42. @Jonathan Mason

    In Trump we trust, blessed be His Name, and truly the Mystery of His Wisdom is too great for mere mortals like us to comprehend.

  43. What would be the purpose of the plan? Do you write one plan for a pandemic that creates a supply shock and another that creates a demand shock. Does the plan get voted on with a straight yes or no vote with no chance for amendments? Obviously airlines are probably going to be hit hard in any case but are cruise ships? What if it is an even more deadly disease like ebola but one where the lock down would likely be more limited?

    Seems a lot smarter to write these ad hoc. The delay wasn’t the writing of the bill it was a delay driven by teasing out who would get blamed for the bill being delayed? When the Gallup poll came back yesterday Democratic opposition basically collapsed.

  44. The CDC and the coronavirus task force have given guidance, but aren’t all the actual, legal closing decisions being made by governors/mayors? Seems to me we’ll have a federalist re-opening. Maybe Sioux Falls can get back to work before Manhattan.

  45. George says:

    Teamsters got their bailout.

  46. Thomas says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    All they need is one good Friday close to sell off. Don’t think this isn’t being engineered and financed right now. The great Easter Pump and Dump. Then they can fly off to their turnkey quarantine retreats and leave the rest of us to fight over ventilators.

  47. @Buffalo Joe

    Giuseppe! Welcome back.

    • Agree: Dtbb
  48. Anonymous[368] • Disclaimer says:
    @Ron Unz

    Let New York be locked down and locked up the rest of the year, Ron. Why do the rest of us have to perform penance indefinitely to aggrandize their dysfunctional fiefdom

    • Replies: @The Alarmist
  49. What is laughable is how very, very few individuals keep themselves prepared financially and materially to live without help, responsible for their own lives, if the SHTF.

    More impractical than laughable. We can’t all be yeoman farmers.

  50. A123 says:
    @Ron Unz

    There needs to be a balance between WUHAN-19 response and everything else.

    Work related insurance covers many people. How many people will suffer or die when a lay-off ends that coverage?

    — COBRA is unaffordable.
    — Low price ObamaCare plans are very restrictive or offer an unaffordably high deductible.
    — Medicaid is already a struggling program.

    After this is all over, I predict that 20/20 hindsight will show that WUHAN-19 ‘government response’ was much deadlier than the disease.

    PEACE 😷

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @Autochthon
  51. Mr. Anon says:

    From the New York Times:

    Coronavirus Live Updates: White House and Congress Reach $2 Trillion Stimulus Deal
    The legislation, which will send direct payments and jobless benefits to individuals, is the biggest economic stimulus package in modern American history.

    Here’s what you need to know:

    And that’s where I stop reading. I despise this trend of news outlets prefacing a story with “Here’s what you need to know”. It’s arrogant and infantalizing. I’m a grown up adult. I’ll decide what I need to know.

    • Agree: Kylie, Rosie, Autochthon
  52. Thomas says:
    @Buffalo Joe

    I’m not sure how the CDC’s and Johns Hopkins numbers line up or what the respective data sources are. But Johns Hopkins is reporting over 55,000 confirmed U.S. cases this morning and over 800 deaths. If those numbers are both right, that’s more than a 25% increase in cases and a nearly 33% increase in deaths in a span of 16 hours. That’s the problem.

    https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/

    • Replies: @jbwilson24
    , @epebble
    , @Enochian
  53. The British plan (for flu) was comprehensive but overwhelmed by the press and public sector trade unions including the overzealous promotion of the Imperial College model. The schoolteachers just abandoned their posts.

  54. Ano says:

    How much will the Clinton Foundation be getting in bail-out funds?

    What’s the name of Bill’s stimulus package? Do I know her?

  55. @Ron Unz

    Easter Sunday, the Resurection, is the perfect time. It is not the “end everything” but a new beginning. The symbolism is perfect.

    As to New Yorkers, well the Boomers of the Sacred City strike again as they are fleeing for Florida, Tennessee, etc; in fact just about every state of the old Confederacy, but not for states rights; but to avoid an obligation to their fellow Man. Two weeks at home is just too much for them apparently.

    The “Wall Street friends” seem to have zero concern over the local businesses that aren’t on the NYSE, NASDAQ or elsewehre. Strange that lack of concern is almost exactly like the Democrats in the House. Once the government ordered shut downs in California, NY, Michigan run their course, or contiunue even longer, just how many small businesses will be left? Thirty days of cash on hand with no income is one thing, months is another. Then it will be the perfect time for implementing the Social Change we can believe in. Green is the new Red comrades!

    For those with plenty of money there will be plenty of prime opportunites for everything from a waterfront restauraunt to the pool cleaning business. I don’t many will want to touch the day care centers, auto repair shops or lawn care operations – the type of people Trump is actually talking about at least as much as airlines, cruise ships (flagged in Bahamas – Disney, Panama – Carnival, etc.) or the rest. We can even reopen borders to EB-1 Visas and those who “start businesses”; it’s not like we’ll have a middle class left to do the later. I’m sure the American Chamber of Commerce will support that idea.

  56. UK says:

    Alternate take:

    Half of the UK already infected by mild and pointless virus from Chinese bat soup.

    http://www.cityam.com/coronavirus-may-have-infected-half-of-uk-population-according-to-experts/amp/

    Media, progressives, Chinese authoritarians and conspiracy theorists distinguish themselves by their hysterical screeching.

    The former two need more perspective, the latter two should be less repressed.

    • Replies: @Smithsonian_6
  57. It’s not exactly sci-fi, but Lionel Shriver’s recent novel The Mandibles is a grimly detailed look at several families coping day-to-day with a complete 2030 collapse of the US economy — right down to no toilet paper.

    In most sci-fi it’s either Mad Max anarchy or the state efficiently supplying everything to an obedient populace. There are no mortgage payments, you are simply assigned to a pod unit and have the required poscreds added or deducted from your subcranial chip

  58. jb says:

    There is one big thing we’ve learned from this that I don’t see anyone talking about: how easily a really bad plague could take down human civilization in its entirety! Imagine a virus as contagious as measles, with five days of asymptomatic transmission, and a 50% untreated mortality rate. It would be unstoppable, and more destructive than an all-out nuclear war.

    While this could occur naturally, what scares me much more is the possibility that such a virus could be artificially engineered. This is quite possibly within the capability of some governments today, and as technology advances, more and more it might become something that rich individuals, rogue scientists, or nut cults could pull off. Many science fiction stories have been written about civilization ending plagues, so it’s not like the idea is new. What’s new is the real-world demonstration of how vulnerable a complex interconnected high-tech society really is, even to relatively mild contagions. If the big one comes along, without massive advances in medical technology, to the point where we can create instant cures for any new disease, those who survive will at best find themselves back in a medieval world, building forts to protect themselves from raiders and scavenging metals from ruined cities.

    • Replies: @Smithsonian_6
  59. Mr. Anon says:

    Global Pandemic – Journalists hit hardest:

    https://www.cjr.org/analysis/journalism-stimulus.php

    Journalism Needs a Stimulus. Here’s What it Should Look Like

  60. Thoughts says:
    @International Jew

    My dance classes were cancelled 🙁 🙁

    My gym was cancelled 🙁 🙁

    All my husbands stuff that he’s involved with was cancelled 🙁 🙁

    Stuff like that is important to your soul

    • Replies: @Inquiring Mind
    , @Anonymous
  61. @International Jew

    ” I’m sure you realize though that under normal circumstances, even when most life takes place indoors, there’s visiting. The hard thing now isn’t the indoors it’s the social isolation.”

    This is a salutary thing for northern Europeans, as the virus might provide evolutionary pressure to select for misanthropes or people with low degrees of trust. That’s exactly what Europe needs, as opposed to the brainless idiots with the ‘welcome refugees’ signs.

  62. @Thomas

    ” Johns Hopkins is reporting over 55,000 confirmed U.S. cases this morning and over 800 deaths. If those numbers are both right, that’s more than a 25% increase in cases and a nearly 33% increase in deaths in a span of 16 hours.”

    Depends on how they are being measured.

    Are medical professionals starting to get trigger happy, attributing deaths from flu and other viruses to this virus? Are the fatalities evidencing high rates of comorbidity with other conditions?

    What about testing? Has the number of tests conducted per day increased substantially, yielding a higher number of confirmed cases due simply to a greater number of tests?

    Various health care professionals have complained on social media that testing has not been widely available, including a nurse in Kirkland (the epicenter of the virus outbreak).

    Maybe the virus is spreading, but there are many variables at play.

  63. J.Ross says:

    If large numbers of people die, banks will respect the emergency as they do not now (and as our government will not make them any more than it will defend itself from China), and certain problems will resolve themselves. Think of what a mess it will be if large numbers do not die. Banks will demand money which cannot be paid and will laugh at the “excuse” of people not having themselves been paid, and the government will back the banks.

  64. rienzi says:

    Saw a Brit doctor go over the numbers from Italy two days ago: More total deaths of folks 90+ than deaths of people under 50.

    Among those 90+, 75% of those who caught the virus were surviving it.

    Deaths rates were tiny for those young enough to be in the work force. This thing is mostly killing old, sick geezers. Just like the regular flu does every fall and winter. It’s certainly not the black death rampaging through society, killing millions like flies.

    The realistic thing would be to isolate everyone old enough to be retired, and let everybody else go about their normal business.

    But that would make too much sense.

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  65. @Buffalo Joe

    Welcome back, Joe! How are things in Buffalo?

    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
  66. Anonymous[123] • Disclaimer says:

    Where is the money going to come from? Who will end up paying for it?

  67. Anon[659] • Disclaimer says:

    It looks like Schumer threw Pelosi under the bus. Pelosi wanted to pork up the bill with all her pet liberal projects, but right now, New York City has 15,597 cases, and San Francisco has 152 cases. Schumer was frantic to get the bill done since his bailiwick is being hit harder than San Fran Nan’s, and he ditched some of the provisions most objectional to Republicans.

    • Replies: @Known Fact
  68. anon[134] • Disclaimer says:

    They could ask people to do a lot of things, but sitting around for over a couple of weeks is the least likely thing to work.

    Furthermore, its the optics of the emergency health system in chaos that has fueled this in every country so far, especially China. And the eventual additional deaths from its breakdown that would occur.

    Current health systems have little headroom for surges. Isn’t that what ‘flatten the curve’ was all about? Using Ron’s numbers. 200,000 to 250,000 has crashed the NY metro emergency health system. That’s maybe 1 or 2% of the population. Plus, what NY will be seeing, which is exponential lag of one to two weeks or 2 to 4x what they have seen so far.

    Back to the optics. The deaths are both very concentrated geographically and temporally. A plane crash, if you will. People are very sensitive to plane crash deaths. They are very visible and clustered. Car crashes kill the equivalent of a 737 crash several times a week in the US. 500 homicides in Chicago is disturbing. But they are very visible, public and concentrated.

    So it is essential that the hospitals learn how to handle a surge. Start with telemedicine. Then remote testing. Then emergency facilities for the less sick, and emergency CCUs for the more severe.

    Meanwhile, reduce severity with antivirals. We have the summer coming up. They have learned something about treating it. Use big data to track it. Etc.

    Regardless, we have seen how it doesn’t take that much to throw the medical system into chaos, and that has to be the total focus. Because that is why China’s 3,000 deaths in Wuhan (2 per million Chinese) became intolerable. Because they were like 15 plane crashes in one city.

  69. Anonymous[123] • Disclaimer says:

    Is $2T not an insane amount of money for a government “stimulus”? The entire GDP of the United States is only $21T.

    How can a bailout of that magnitude possibly be justified?

  70. epebble says:
    @International Jew

    This has been done in societies from time immemorial (at least since the dawn of paper money): too much demand for goods and services, not enough supply of goods and services -> increase money supply. Generally, experience shows this leads to inflation. This time, due to globalization, things will be more complicated. Some countries will have more inflation, some less. There may be sovereign defaults by heavily indebted countries. USA will survive, probably somewhat diminished, but international order will be changed. This will probably mark the diminishing of many European countries like Italy and Spain. Like Portugal and Netherlands – once a great powers – now mainly destinations for a curious tourist (or for wine and cheese).

  71. epebble says:
    @Thomas

    Exponential function – small change in delta t will show large change on the y axis. We are at near vertical climb of the curve.

  72. indocon says:
    @Ron Unz

    A primer on stats should be required for anybody to comment at unz.com

  73. Jack D says:
    @Ron Unz

    200,000 to 250,000 NY residents are currently infected, a figure vastly higher than the official total. If that’s the case, I wouldn’t be surprised if the New York death rate has reached 500 per day by Easter, perhaps even 1,000 per day.

    You’re using sleight of hand. On the one hand you (probably correctly) do not accept the official total for infections. Given the lack of testing availability and the instructions from the authorities that you should NOT get tested unless you are already in distress, this is probably right.

    BUT, on the other hand, you are using official death rates. What goes hand in hand with the fact that the # of people who have this disease is being vastly undercounted is that the death rate is being vastly over-estimated.

    This is certainly a bad disease that is going to carry off a good number of (mainly but not entirely) elderly people and people with pre-existing conditions (and even a few people, a very few, who were young and in good health before) who might have lived anywhere from a few months to several years more. But it is not the Black Death. It is not even the Spanish Flu.

    For anyone under 40, fatalities are EXTREMELY rare. The death rate for those under 40 is being reported as .2% (2 in 1,000 infected) but even that is probably much too high. There are probably 10 people under 40 who have been infected and didn’t even know it or thought that they had a minor cold or the flu for each person who has been tested or who has otherwise been recorded as having it, so the actual death rate for under 40’s is probably more like .02% (2 in 10,000 and probably those 2 had some underlying condition and were not the healthiest to begin with).

    For those over 40, the death rates are higher but there seems to be no question that the disease is mainly culling the flock of its weakest and oldest members. As cynical as this sounds, from an economic POV, emptying out the nursing homes is not the worst thing for our society. Our society was becoming increasingly geriatric – Presidential candidates in their late 70s, “sexy” Superbowl halftime pop stars in their 50s, etc. This is not really good for a society. All those people changing bed pans in nursing homes would be more productive if they were working in a factory making stuff. Maybe the current situation will cause us to re-evaluate whether it was really a good idea to offshore all of our industry to China so that we couldn’t even make face masks anymore?

  74. indocon says:
    @nebulafox

    The Chinese and Bin. Laden have led America too take probably $15T+ in debt once you factor in Iraq/Afghan wars cost.

  75. @Ron Unz

    It’s true enough that exponential curves can change absolute numbers in a flash.

    But that can go both ways. If R0 stays well above 1.0, then expect dramatic growth. If it goes well below 1.0 after strict measures have been taken (as it has in S Korea and China), expect dramatic reduction.

    We have very little good evidence where R0 is now in the US.

    But we could easily see real whiplash in the numbers, if we’re effectively doing anything like S Korea and China.

    It’s pretty foolish in general to make rigid plans of action at this point when the basics are so opaque as they are now. We need to learn to play it by ear.

    Trump actually seems to me to be pretty good at playing things by ear.

    It may well be that a significant easing of restrictions will still tamp the numbers down and allow the economy to thrive.

  76. Hibernian says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    Mr. Mason, you’re lucky the UK no longer has blasphemy laws. Or do they, applicable only to Islam? At least that’s what the Archbishop of Canterbury proposed a few years back.

  77. Factor NYC out of NY and the rest of the state looks quite good indeed. But like kindergarten, all must be punished equally for the misbehavior of a few.

  78. @Jonathan Mason

    You are confusing things: God will sit at Trump’s right, and Fauci right behind them.

  79. Neoconned says:

    I’m only speculating here….i often say I’m just an idiot who reads the news a lot….

    I spoke yesterday w my former asst manager from 1 of the restaurants i used to work for. He’s telling me some small businesses have already closed shop FOR GOOD. Some local mom & pop type businesses have shuttered. because they can’t afford their lease or power or other utility payments….their workers are literally laid off & up shit creek with out a paddle because they have no job to go back to once this crap blows over….

    Drudge had a link:

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/finance/markets/countries-are-starting-to-hoard-food-threatening-global-trade/ar-BB11EY3M

    This is DEFLATIONARY…..im beginning to wonder if this will cause a depression….for students of history….before Rome fell pandemics were cited as a factor in the fall of Rome….are we similar?

  80. Truth says:
    @Ron Unz

    My friend, you have lost your mind…

  81. @International Jew

    Is the implication that people shouldn’t be asking “where’s my bailout?”

    • Replies: @International Jew
  82. The Z Blog says: • Website

    This guy has been the most accurate and sober minded modeler thus far: https://wmbriggs.com/post/29886/

    We are getting pretty close to the peak. That Easter Sunday forecast looks pretty good at the moment.

  83. anon[134] • Disclaimer says:

    Nearly a month into the outbreak, local officials are increasingly taking matters into their own hands so they can obtain critical equipment and grasp the extent of the virus’s spread in their communities. That includes working with private labs and forging direct relationships with test suppliers on the other side of the world.

    “I can’t believe we’re at this point,” said Connie Savor Price, chief medical officer at Denver Health Medical Center, one of the city’s major hospitals, which has been slowed by shortages of personal protective equipment, testing swabs and the fluid needed to keep samples intact. “It’s dystopian.”

    Just a minor example of the fragility of our front line health systems to demand surges. It’s dystopian.

    Seattle is further along, having started a few weeks earlier here, but with its younger demographic and smaller population as well as other strengths, has been able to manage so far.

    In Los Angeles, city councilman David Ryu said he used personal connections to get in touch with a South Korean company that manufactures test kits. Mr. Ryu and county officials said Monday that they had acquired 20,000 new Covid-19 tests.

    Eventually, Mr. Ryu said, the county is hoping its contract with the company could provide as many as 100,000 tests per week. The challenge is acquiring enough essential components—including swabs and protective equipment—and finding personnel to administer them.

    A centralized logistical response just isn’t going to work. People aren’t just sitting back waiting for Washington. The national narrative so far has been pathologically centered on Trump. It’s so not about him.

  84. “We” just agreed on a massive amount of corporate welfare. And you’re going to be hearing about this for years. Every time some Democrat wants some dumb spending program, they’ll point to this. “We bailed out the corporations, why can’t we do X?” The obvious answer is because we still have to pay down the debt we took on to bail out the corporations. But that answer isn’t sexy, people won’t want to hear it. The Far-Left will be energized by this, because they’ll be right, not in the solution, but in identifying the hypocrisy of all these fans of capitalism looking for a handout.

  85. Corvinus says:
    @Jack D

    It’s not about fatalities, it’s about rate of infection that lead to fatalities. As of March 21, fifty-five percent of people who have tested positive in New York State are between the ages of 18 and 49.

    And, thanks, Mr. Sailer, for feigning ignorance. LOL–So, uh, what just happened? Why not actually comment on Trump’s proposal to “open up” the U.S. by Easter?

    Hat Tip –> Thomas (a commenter)

    “The Wall Street mandarins and establishment cucks are pushing Trump to reopen everything while the spread of this thing as far as we can tell is still getting worse and at a faster rate…Trump got elected more than anything because his voters had had it with being told they should be replaced for the good of the all-sacred economy. It’ll be a tragic irony if he winds up killing off a few hundred thousand (or a couple million) of his voters in sacrifice to Mammon.”

    #DieForTheDow

    Remember, at the start of the coronavirus epidemic, Trump chose to treat MEDICINE like POLITICS and the situation as a public relations event. Then, (poof), a talking to by a Fox News analyst (Tucker Carlson), and soon he (and others) reluctantly acknowledge that MEDICINE is MEDICINE.

    The CDC is warning Trump officials NOT to ease restrictions because of the stock market and impact of high unemployment for the upcoming 2020 election. Should not Trump defer to the professionals in this case? Experts on epidemics agree: There are ways to fight the coronavirus. It will take near-total public cooperation, Americans agreeing to stay home, a system isolating the infected, more travel restrictions, ramped up testing, and the production of vital equipment.

    Take a hard dose of reason. Hat Tip –> Jus’ Sayin’

    The overarching issue is that the USA and all other countries with free market economies are faced with a nightmarish and probably insoluble policy conundrum/dilemma. I use the word “insoluble” advisedly because we are currently operating in a “fog of war” situation. We lack the data needed to make a fully informed choice between two broad policy options, both of which carry potentially catastrophic risks. Yet we must make this choice now.

    On the one hand, if stringent public health measures are not put in place and the current pandemic is allowed to run its natural course, hundreds of millions may be sickened, tens of millions may die, and some as yet unknown portion of the survivors may have permanent, disabling damage to vital organs. The worse projections suggest that health care systems will be overwhelmed to the point that many millions will be denied life-saving care. In this case there will be permanent long-term damage to these systems that will require decades of rebuilding. Historically, uncontrolled pandemics have profound, long term social and cultural impacts that are difficult to gauge. Standing against this, bad pandemics clear much human deadwood, i.e., pensioners like myself, from the economy.

    Taking the opposite approach – the one I favored absolutely until I engaged with the more informed and rational commenters here and elsewhere – and imposing stringent public health measures lasting for many months will disrupt economies, which are already alarmingly fragile, to an extent comparable with the Great Depression. Tragically, those who would be most affected are already living on the edge of economic disaster. Much of the middle class would also suffer serious economic disruptions.

    The engines currently maintaining economies in the developed world are consumer expenditures and massive, overwhelming debt in all sectors and at every level of the economy. If stringent public health measures are enacted, those most affected, e.g., workers in the food service, entertainment, hospitality, and tourism, industries, will be left without even the meager financial resources they have now. Without government assistance they will lose housing, food, and hope. Meanwhile, these same people, a major segment of the consumer economy, will be unable to continue the consumption that currently helps maintains the economy of the USA and other countries. It is imperative that in a situation like this, these people receive help. Otherwise a catastrophic collapse of political, social, and economic systems is almost inevitable.

    Small businesses would be similarly impacted by stringent public health measures, as would even the largest corporations in industries like those mentioned above. The ultimate impact on the economy will be even greater.

    So if governments choose not to let the current pandemic run its course they would have to support those individuals and small businesses, who face economic and personal catastrophe absent government support. The continued spending on consumer goods by these individuals and businesses is vital to maintaining the economy. Governments would also have to support industries hardest hit by necessary public health measures. Without such support, the likely collapse of these industries would cause a ripple effects that would bring further catastrophe.

    Unfortunately, the devil is in the details. Governments that choose to impose strict public health measures to control the pandemic would need to provide subsidies to affected individuals, households, and businesses.

    I live in Massachusetts. If one uses Chinese experience in Wuhan to conservatively project a doubling of infections every five days and a case mortality rate of 2 per hundred in the absence of infection controls, then without prompt public health action, Massachusetts might experience projected infections and deaths like the ones in the table below.

    Date Infections Deaths
    15-Mar-20 164 3
    20-Mar-20 328 7
    25-Mar-20 656 13
    30-Mar-20 1,312 26
    4-Apr-20 2,624 52
    9-Apr-20 5,248 105
    14-Apr-20 10,496 210
    19-Apr-20 20,992 420
    24-Apr-20 41,984 840
    29-Apr-20 83,968 1,679
    4-May-20 167,936 3,359
    9-May-20 335,872 6,717
    14-May-20 671,744 13,435

    Of course, the further out projections are much too high. The curve of total infections in an epidemic take the shape of a logistic curve. At some point exponential growth ends and the rate of new infections flattens out; eventually ending as the epidemic burns itself out.

    But looking at these figures, one understands why Governor Baker decided to close schools, limit bars and restaurants to take out, and ban all public gatherings of 25 or more people. These measures may help prevent a foreseeable catastrophe.

    [AND NOW THE MONEY QUOTE***]

    ****Americans, and the developed world in general, have forgotten just how bad infectious disease epidemics can be and what difficult public health measures measures may be needed to curb them. As the projections above should suggest, now is a time for urgent public health measures to control what in their absence could become a catastrophe. Unfortunately, the populations of developed nations, the USA in particular, have become accustomed to the luxury of ignoring the dangers of infectious diseases and infectious disease epidemics****. Some of the inappropriate responses have been irrational outbreaks of panic on the one hand and a petulant anger at necessary prohibitions on the other. Just yesterday, I read that a wannabe Typhoid Mary, a man confirmed to have an active case of Covid-19, had to be physically restrained by police lest he go out into the community and spread the disease. A bar owner in Nashville, Tennessee, has ignored the mayor’s orders and turned his venue into a hot spot for Covid-19 infections.

    • Agree: Thomas
    • Replies: @Whiskey
    , @keypusher
  86. The media will demand everything be open by April 15th, since their passover is ending

  87. Nothing burger?

    Coronavirus may have already infected half of UK, study says

    The rapidly spreading coronavirus may have already infected half the UK population — but that is encouraging news, according to a new study by the University of Oxford.

    The modeling by researchers at Oxford’s Evolutionary Ecology of Infectious Disease group indicates the COVID-19 virus reached the UK by mid-January at the latest, spreading undetected for more than a month before the first official case was reported in late February, the Financial Times reports.

    But even though this suggests the spread is far worse than scientists previously estimated, it also implies that only one in a thousand people infected with COVID-19 requires hospitalization.

    The researchers say this shows that herd immunity — the idea that the virus will stop spreading when enough of the population builds up resistance through becoming infected — can help fight the highly-contagious disease.

  88. @Jack D

    Agreed, for the most part. As I wrote in earlier comments to Ron’s current article and equation:

    [MORE]

    Number of infected = Number of Deaths / Mortality_Rate *2^(Mortality_Period/Doubling_Period)

    It might be very difficult to estimate two of the factors:

    Mortality Rate. Knowing this requires knowing the total number of cases that existed when the dead on any given day contracted the virus. Have we really known this with any accuracy at any time? If we haven’t really known how many cases existed at any given time, then how can we know the mortality rate?

    Doubling Period. Related to the above. Plus, the accounting of total cases becomes more effective as more tests are mass produced and used. We find more because we have more tools to do it. Thus the Doubling Period factor is confounded by increasingly sensitive measurement of one of its own factors, total cases at any given time.

    and

    The equation thus seems to possibly be tautological or circular. If the denominator Mortality Rate cannot be known without knowing how many infected existed at any given time, then the whole equation relies on its own result to achieve its result.

    However, it is not possible for us here to put a value on what things will feel like when thousands of grandmothers and grandfathers are dying every day, and when the New York City media show the world these people and others on cots filling the Jacob Javits Center.

    Others here can correct my math interpretation, but mathematics doesn’t completely describe what is going on. We may just be along for the ride.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  89. @Jack D

    As cynical as this sounds, from an economic POV, emptying out the nursing homes is not the worst thing for our society.

    Considering that Social Security and Medicare account for about half of the federal budget and that Medicaid is a chunk too, it is a blessing. Now if we can just cut the military budget in half, then you are talking some serious wedge saved for taxpayers and we can then increase the rate of pay for members of Congress and Supreme Court judges to attract some better candidates, and maybe give pensions to the judges so that they can afford to retire and not have to die in office like royalty. To protect themselves, they may have to find that corona virus is unconstitutional and has no standing before the court.

    Also take into account that many of the departed will leave estates that will benefit their heirs.

    • Replies: @GU
  90. Thomas says:
    @Jack D

    This is certainly a bad disease that is going to carry off a good number of (mainly but not entirely) elderly people and people with pre-existing conditions (and even a few people, a very few, who were young and in good health before) who might have lived anywhere from a few months to several years more. But it is not the Black Death. It is not even the Spanish Flu.

    For anyone under 40, fatalities are EXTREMELY rare.

    The median age in the United States is 38. That means there are a lot, an awful lot, of people over 40 who are still of working age. And it isn’t as if the 21st century USA is a land of vegan marathoners in their prime. The majority of adults are overweight. Nearly half of those are obese. “Pre-existing conditions” are probably the norm rather than the exception.

    The world has lived through eight or nine recessions or depressions in the last century. We’ve only had one pandemic, the Spanish flu, that looks to be in the same league as what’s coming now. We’ve developed the tools to mitigate the human effects of an economic downturn a lot better than we have to mitigate a deadly pandemic. That’s becoming more and more apparent every day.

    It’s time for the finance people to accept that the party is over, the 11 year bull market is over, and the good times won’t be back for a little while. If they didn’t take their profits as of last month, well, that’s why it’s called “risk.” It’s not as if a recession wasn’t going to be coming eventually, as they always do.

    As far as the people on Main Street, we have unemployment insurance. The government is giving forbearances on student loans for a year, effectively, at 0% interest. A lot of jurisdictions now have eviction and foreclosure moratoriums in effect, and the courts are closed plenty of places anyway. And, in any case, creditors don’t really have a lot of options right now finding other people to borrow, so maybe they’re going to have to work with people in debt rather than just getting their money now.

    The idea that we have to all play Russian roulette to keep the party going is nuts. And, frankly, given what a uncontrolled pandemic will probably do to the economy anyway, I strongly suspect #ReopenAmerica is more concerned with giving Wall Street players who didn’t get out in time a window to close their hold positions than it is with anything to do with the broader economy.

  91. Whiskey says: • Website
    @Corvinus

    Again you don’t get. Great Depression Electric Boogaloo is not Obamas Third Term.

    It’s Staff Sgt. Samuel K Doe, mass expulsions of non Whites, Race based civil war, genocide of White people and counter genocide of non Whites. Think Eastern Front, Yugoslavia in the 1990s and Syria.

    This is not China or Japan. People are one homeless stint away from slaughtering their neighbors. There is no margin of error.

    Deaths from violent civil war> deaths from Kung Flu.

    • Replies: @BenKenobi
    , @Corvinus
  92. Anonymous[123] • Disclaimer says:
    @Thomas

    As far as the people on Main Street, we have unemployment insurance. The government is giving forbearances on student loans for a year, effectively, at 0% interest. A lot of jurisdictions now have eviction and foreclosure moratoriums in effect, and the courts are closed plenty of places anyway. And, in any case, creditors don’t really have a lot of options right now finding other people to borrow, so maybe they’re going to have to work with people in debt rather than just getting their money now.

    Do you think the bailout package is excessive? Couldn’t the country have gotten by with existing unemployment insurance and beefed up paid leave support?

    • Replies: @Thomas
  93. @Jonathan Mason

    I really think Trump’s idea of heaven is more the Playboy Mansion where “what happens in the PM stays in the PM.”

  94. Steve,

    The comments section of SSC’s mask article has some good information from Stanford:
    Baking a mask at 70 degrees C for 30 min may be effective sterilization that doesn’t destroy the mask.
    https://stanfordmedicine.box.com/v/covid19-PPE-1-1
    from
    https://aim.stanford.edu/covid-19-evidence-service/

    Research presented is on E.coli, but the WHO says original SARS is killed at 56 C, so Stanford recommendation seems sound.
    https://www.who.int/csr/sars/survival_2003_05_04/en/

    Note from Stanford that bleach destroys mask integrity.

    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
  95. Lot says:
    @Ron Unz

    “ Take another look at the death totals on that website at the end of this week.”

    Covid has been in metro seattle, Korea, Singapore Netherlands, Germany, and parts of China that the Wuhaners fled right before lockdown. No mass deaths as in Spain and Italy however.

    Between the panickers and the fraudvirusers, I am closer to the panickers based on economic and mental impact rather than death toll.

    • Replies: @epebble
  96. Ron Unz says:
    @Jack D

    You’re using sleight of hand. On the one hand you (probably correctly) do not accept the official total for infections…BUT, on the other hand, you are using official death rates. What goes hand in hand with the fact that the # of people who have this disease is being vastly undercounted is that the death rate is being vastly over-estimated.

    No. My impression is that the 1% fatality rate is reasonably well-established based on the massive data from China and subsequently confirmed by other outbreaks. But if you disagree with it, feel free to just plug your own number into my formula. That’s the reason I provided my methodology as a formula.

    Keep in mind that the *lower* the true mortality rate, the *higher* the number of implied infections based upon the death rate. So it’s actually quite possible that a mortality rate below 1% would collapse the health care system sooner and perhaps even then lead to greater total deaths.

    Anyway, as I already emphasized upthread, we’re not pointlessly arguing about Global Warming in the year 2040. We’ll know within the next few weeks who’s right and who’s wrong. Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised if a thousand New Yorkers per day are already dying by Easter, leading Trump and his Wall Street friends to “pivot” on their economic plans.

    Individuals who seem to have rather weak quantitative backgrounds should probably stick to ideological disputes.

  97. @Chrisnonymous

    Steve,

    I have a new theory about why Japan is doing well, and it doesn’t bode well for the US…

    This research from UK ICUs shows that COVID-19 lack of severity is predicted by low BMI:
    https://www.icnarc.org/About/Latest-News/2020/03/22/Report-On-196-Patients-Critically-Ill-With-Covid-19

    It’s possible that Japan’s testing is less thorough but that their cases don’t show up as a high rate of death and severity among their infected because of generally low BMI in Japan–even lower than South Korea.

    • Thanks: LondonBob
  98. epebble says:
    @Lot

    No mass deaths as in Spain and Italy however.

    What news are you reading/watching? They have abandoned old age homes in Spain because they can’t remove dead bodies fast enough (leaving the remaining old people to die). Military is now trying to disinfect these buildings (after removing corpses). Italy has a flat rule that none above 60 can be put in ICU. They are both having deaths multiple times of China having a tiny fraction of population – probably it may end up in tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands.

  99. Jack D says:
    @Thomas

    given what a uncontrolled pandemic will probably do to the economy anyway,

    An uncontrolled pandemic (which we are not going to have anyway) is GOOD for the economy and for working people once it is over. After the Black Death, wages went up because labor was more scarce. Killing off mainly older and sicker people controls future health care costs, it makes the math better for social security and pensions, etc.

    There are definitely going to be winners and losers – the cruise business may never fully recover. Domestic makers of masks are going to have a permanently larger market. And so on. Certainly the most recent bull market has come to a close. But long term, the 1920s, after the Spanish Flu, was a period of great prosperity.

  100. Anonymous[123] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    After the Black Death, wages went up because labor was more scarce.

    Could you please provide a citation for that?

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  101. J.Ross says:

    Deal reached? Sort of.

    • Replies: @Mr McKenna
  102. the US is on war footing alright. civil war footing. it’s hard to predict what’s gonna happen.

    that is by far the bigger issue. that’s 1000 times as important as this pissant nothing virus.

    at any point now we could just be a few days away from losing the country forever due to the amount of insane crazy shit that is happening.

    the Democrats are making their move. they know this is it. America 1.0 is about to break. they can get it before the election.

  103. peterike says:

    Did the Democrats manage to sneak in their national voting by mail law? If they did, then it’s game over FOREVER for any Republican. The Dems will essentially be able to steal any election they want.

    It wouldn’t surprise me at all if Republicans let this slip through.

  104. There is a science fiction short story, possibly in one of the Pournelle (your late friend) anthologies, that deals with a downturn in the economy. Unfortunately, one should never move as the books never remain in order.

    So the story goes, it seems one Blue Collar worker passes on buying his wife a new house appliance, the hardware store owner then passes on his new cadillac, the cadillac dealer passes on ordering extra cars, and so on. Soon the economy of the United States heads to recession. Using a new fangled device called a ‘computer’ they (an intelligent government – this is how you know it’s fiction) are able to determine in the end that by providing the necessary money for the house appliance to Mr. Blue Collar, all will be right in the economic structure.

    Unlike the huge stimulus plan about to crash out of Congress, perhaps a more directed stream of available cash would help. To one person. Perhaps me.

    Any help on the title out there would be nice.

    • Replies: @Jmaie
  105. @Buzz Mohawk

    However, it is not possible for us here to put a value on what things will feel like when thousands of grandmothers and grandfathers are dying every day, and when the New York City media show the world these people and others on cots filling the Jacob Javits Center.

    Well, we now have scare pics of makeshift tents outside NY Bellevue Hospital:

    NY morgues are claimed to be, “near capacity.”

    Still not seeing smoldering corpse pyramids or bodies stacked up like cordwood.

    Heck, for all the media’s attempts to create mass hysteria, we still haven’t seen any ICUs overflowing with ventilator patients, other than some brief footage from Italy.

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
  106. No. My impression is that the 1% fatality rate is reasonably well-established based on the massive data from China and subsequently confirmed by other outbreaks. But if you disagree with it, feel free to just plug your own number into my formula. That’s the reason I provided my methodology as a formula.

    Ron, do you have any link for this claim from China? A place where they claim to have tested everyone?

    The only place i’ve heard of where we really have a hard number for the denominator is the Diamond Princess:
    712 cases
    331 asymptomatic
    ~70 requiring intensive care
    10 deaths.

    That’s 1.4%. But a very strongly elderly skewing population that was locked in quarantine for a while, but on the positive side eventually got full medical care–no triage. Still age adjusting this number for a normal Western population would give you a death rate of .2%–with medical care.

    Diamond Princess is a small sample of a very particular sort of people under very particular conditions. I’d love to consign it to the dust bin. But i’ve yet to hear of anyplace where there is or was sufficient testing–i.e. everyone–so that we know a real #of cases. Instead testing most places is only for sick people with well developed symptoms.

    These published death rate stats so far seem to me to cry out “selection bias”. I’ll be very surprised when this whole thing shakes out if we get a real death rate of 1%.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  107. Albert Wenger, a venture capitalist who reads sci-fi, had and interesting proposal for what to do with mortgages and the like: https://continuations.com/post/613206134869901312/putting-the-economy-in-suspended-animation-a

  108. 6 trillion dollars and the people get a $1200 one time payment

    Unbelievable

    • Agree: Daniel H
    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  109. Travis says:
    @Buffalo Joe

    evidence from China and Italy suggests that patients who died from Covid-19 were infected 25 days before their death. This virus takes weeks to kill those infected. Thus those who died yesterday and today were infected 25 days ago. Thus we can calculate how many Americans were infected 25 days ago if we know the death rate.

    600 Americans succumbed to the China coronavirus thus far…if the death-rate is .08% then there were 75,000 Americans infected with coronavirus 4 weeks ago.

    if the death rate is 1% , then 60,000 Americans were infected 4 weeks ago

    Please explain how we can have over 500 dying over the last week without having over 50,000 infected 4 weeks ago ? Those dying this week were infected by March 1st because it takes 4 weeks to die after being exposed to this virus.

    if 50,000 Americans were infected by March 1st , how many are currently infected ? If the number of infected doubles in 6 days , we would have 100,000 infected by March 7 , 200,000 Infected by March 13, 400,000 infected by March 19 and 800,000 infected today.

    • Agree: Ron Unz
    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
    , @UK
  110. peterike says:

    Then there’s this guy.

    Plus his open letter here.

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1SesxgaPnpT6OfCYuaFSwXzDK4cDKMbivoALprcVFj48/preview

    Results seem very promising with Hydroxychloroquine.

    Media seems terribly uncurious about what’s happening with New York’s “experiment” using this drug. But they sure love retelling that fish tank cleaner story and blaming it all on Trump.

  111. Jack D says:
    @Ron Unz

    Individuals who seem to have rather weak quantitative backgrounds should probably stick to ideological disputes.

    Puhlease, you are not the only mathematical genius around here. And it’s not like this is rocket science. Anyone with high school math is capable of understanding the rather simple equations that underlie the exponential growth (and collapse – while epidemics tend to grow exponentially they also tend to collapse exponentially) of epidemics. The problems is that no one knows what values to attach to the parameters – we are all stumbling around in the dark here. Having a strong quantitative background doesn’t give you any special insight into the value of R nought.

  112. A123 says:
    @Jack D

    There are definitely going to be winners and losers – the cruise business may never fully recover. Domestic makers of masks are going to have a permanently larger market. And so on.

    Domestic manufacturing of almost everything will be the biggest winner.

    The public demonstration of failed Globalist overseas sourcing will land everywhere. Initially, Government orders will force American manufacturing of critical goods from U.S. raw materials. Once that kick start is complete, shorter turnaround time and higher quality of U.S. goods will take over the marketplace.

    PEACE 😷

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  113. Frédéric Bastiat (French economist / June 1801 – December 1850) gives us a prophetic and cogent argument on government spending in his paper “What is seen and What is not seen.”

    “Vote fifty million francs (more or less) to build ports and roads in Algeria so that we can transport colonists there, build houses for them, and clear fields for them. If you do this, you will have lifted a burden from the shoulders of the French worker, encouraged employment in Africa, and increased trade in Marseilles. It would be all profit.” [Uh, didn’t the French get kicked out of Algiers? Isn’t Africa moving now to France?]

    Then Bastiat follows up –

    “But, besides all this, there is something which is not seen. The fifty millions expended by the State cannot be spent, as they otherwise would have been, by the taxpayers.” [Uh, didn’t the US Government already do this with the housing bubble loans? So now they want partnership in businesses supported with massive cash influx?]

    • Replies: @Hippopotamusdrome
  114. @International Jew

    Cut the for-profit banks out of the loop entirely. Then they don’t “need” lines of credit. The bankers and the Fed Reserve “officials” and “governors” become irrelevant and can go live off their ill-gotten gains or get useful honest jobs for a change.

    Have the federal government lend directly to the American people with no middleman taking a cut. Create a public bank for this purpose:

    https://www.publicbankinginstitute.org/

    Offer zero percent or one percent interest loans to refinance all home mortgages, vehicle loans, and student loans.

    There would be great sums freed up for people to save and invest for their children’s college, for retirement, for their household emergency fund, for large purchase like vehicles and homes themselves, Americans would also live their lives free from much of their current anxiety and fear due to crushing interest payments and lack of savings.

    • Agree: Daniel H
    • Replies: @International Jew
  115. Jack D says:
    @AnotherDad

    I agree with this. Diamond Princess is probably as close as you can get to an accidental controlled experiment but the problem is that the experiment did not start off with a randomly selected group. It was almost the polar opposite of one. If you have any experience with cruises, the population skews MUCH older than the general population.

    I don’t have the data from the Diamond Princess in front of me but it should be possible to infer an age adjusted death rate for the general population from the Diamond Princess death rates and age distribution.

    Base on the S. Korea experience, the death rate for those 60-69 is 10x the death rate for those under 50 and the death rate for those 80+ is on the order of 100x the under 50 rate. (50-60 and 70-80 are in between).

    https://www.statista.com/statistics/1105088/south-korea-coronavirus-mortality-rate-by-age/

    So all you need to do is work backward from the Diamond Princess age and mortality data and you should be able to come up with a predicted rate for the general US population.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  116. @Ron Unz

    this entire post is a false positive.

    based on the growth rate of lacrosse, i predict that in a few years it will overtake football as the most popular sport in America.

    see how that works?

    the fastest growing (x) will become the biggest (y). these exponential growth models are horseshit.

    furthermore, New York City is not filled with old white boomers. that’s the old New York City. today, it’s filled with young vibrants. because it’s not even an American city anymore. this virus mainly kills old white boomers. less of them there than average. they all moved to Florida.

    12,000 dead to get to swine flu. 25,000 dead to get to an average flu season. 80,000 dead to get to the flu season from 2018, which nobody cared about. it probably won’t even get to swine flu, which people barely noticed.

  117. @Thomas

    “The median age in the United States is 38”

    but it’s 34 in New York City, and 31 in lots of the vibrant, Democrat controlled cities like Dallas, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Phoenix, San Diego. they just aren’t going to be hit as hard.

    there are not as many old white boomers in these cities, the people who the virus kills. once it kills a bunch of them, it will mostly be done killing. it won’t start killing lots of people under 60. the virus will saturate the old, already in bad health boomer population, kill a few thousand, and that will be it.

    “We’ve only had one pandemic, the Spanish flu, that looks to be in the same league as what’s coming now.”

    the 1968 flu killed 100,000 Americans. also, the Olympics were in October that year.

    oh wait, they had the Summer Olympics DURING a flu pandemic? and in OCTOBER?

    yes. yes they did. and they can EASILY have the Olympics this year. we have just all turned into blubbering pussies, so we can’t do anything apparently.

    • Replies: @RichardTaylor
    , @Spud Boy
  118. GU says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    Federal judges already receive a full salary pension upon retirement.

  119. Serious question:

    Do you think any of us will ever personally know someone who is made sick by this “pandemic”? I mean just one?

  120. @Buffalo Joe

    Mamma mia! Sonofagooch! Welcome back ya big softie.

  121. Enochian says:
    @Thomas

    The people who are dying (over 800 so far) probably got sick, say 10 days ago, when the number of U.S. cases was only 2,500. The denominator used should be the cases diagnosed X days ago, where X is the average number of days between diagnosis and death, no?

  122. “Houston, we have a problem… Houston… Houston… Are you there?”

    You know what regular federal government service didn’t show up this week?

    This Week @NASA

    Makes one wonder, is the ISS the best place to be now, or the worst?

    All traditions are scrapped: Keeping coronavirus off the ISS

    Here’s how NASA protects astronauts and the International Space Station from coronavirus

    National Geographic: Stuck in a cramped space? This astronaut has some advice.

    Astronauts offer advice on keeping calm (and carrying on) amid coronavirus outbreak

    If you can make it to Point Nemo in the Pacific, your nearest human neighbors will be one the ISS when it passes overhead.

    Finally, Happy New Year, everybody!

    • Replies: @Joe Stalin
  123. @Ron Unz

    Ron, first time in a conversation with you so thank you. I am far from bitter and certainly not a science denier and I am concerned. I have three children and three grandchildren who live in Ohio, which is in a shutdown. Ohio has, as of today, 704 cases and 10 deaths in a population of 11,660,000 plus.I posted before that an 11 year old healthy, active boy, whose family I personally know, died about 10 weeks ago from “seasonal flu.” So I feel for those who are sick and those families who have lost a love one. But, the fact is, seasonal flu affects more than 3 million Americans per year, with more than 350K hospitalizations and 18,000 deaths. The death toll is in question because the CDC uses estimates and basically eliminates “flu” deaths in those over 65 . We have a congressman in Buffalo calling for converting the shuttered Telsa solar panel plant into a manufacturer of ventilators. You want more ventilators then give Purchase Orders to the companies that make them. “Shortages” of medical equipment and supplies are caused by a need that exceeds supply, but no competent manager produces more than they can sell. We have a governor in NY calling for a “wartime” reponse to COVID. Yeah, our own FDR. There would be fewer flu deaths if sick people stayed home and schools closed when the number of sick staff and students reached a preset number. But, NY has shut down its economy. Alot of small businesses will never recover and yet, on my street, as I took my daily walk, I see workers siding my neighbors house, another crew doing a kitchen tear out and remodel and a interior painting contractor prepping a newly listed house. What I also saw was the local diner on Main street that does a great breakfast business closed. No one stops by for pancakes and eggs and bacon to go. All the big union construction jobs are still going and Cuomo looks like he just got a hair cut. I have said enough. Stay safe. Stay well.

  124. anon[391] • Disclaimer says:

    I wonder, how many people can I irritate with this link? Those who actually hate Jews (as opposed to “anti-Semites”, i.e. those hated by one or more Jewish people) won’t like it. Sufferers from Trump Derangement won’t like it. Those who regard government as a god won’t like it. “I-fking-love-science” may be disturbed.

    Enjoy, everyone!

    https://forward.com/news/national/442285/coronavirus-hydroxychloroquine-trump-doctor/

    His treatment is what Trump suggested, plus zinc sulfate. He claims to have treated 500 people with zero hospitalizations or intubations. Pretty good record, if true. The evidence is on his side.

    Zelenko said that he has been using a cocktail of drugs on his patients: hydroxychloroquine, in combination with azithromycin — an antibiotic to treat secondary infections — and zinc sulfate, which studies have suggested slows down virus replication in the body. He said he had been administering the cocktail to patients with shortness of breath of any age, and those over 60 years old or who are immunocompromised and exhibiting milder symptoms. He said he is not treating asymptomatic people under 60 who are healthy or low risk.

    Zelenko has been urging people in the ultra-Orthodox world to stay calm, even as he has sounded the alarm about potentially high rates of infection in Hasidic villages and neighborhoods. In a video message shared on WhatsApp, he said that the majority of people infected with the virus will require no treatment.

    Let the raging begin!

    PS: Let’s start calling the combination of hydroxychloroquine, in combination with azithromycin the “Trump Cure”. Because, just because.

  125. epebble says:
    @Jack D

    That is a pretty weak analysis. Uncontrolled pandemic that destroys very large number of people, even if skewed to older people, causes severe depletion in community wisdom. In USA, for example, the boomers are the best educated and skilled. (Have you worked with any 20 something, 30 something? especially analytical or STEM? – the Asians will eat them for breakfast and East Europeans will defecate them). More incalculable will be loss of confidence and morale. With a sudden loss of significant fraction of political leadership, we will end up with fractious populist/socialist governments that won’t know its hand from its ass (Exhibit A – Look at any African or South American country). Best case scenario, we will rapidly descend into a third world nation that will make immigrating to South America or Eastern Europe attractive.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    , @AnotherDad
  126. @Travis

    Travis, then the sane thing to do is to TEST EVERYONE.

    • Replies: @Travis
  127. @Jonathan Mason

    Jonathon, humor, even black humor, is always good.

  128. @prime noticer

    it won’t start killing lots of people under 60. the virus will saturate the old, already in bad health boomer population, kill a few thousand, and that will be it.

    It will do what bugs usually do. There must have been an ulterior motive to this “pandemic” freak out. Democrats had their obvious motives, but a lot of other guys pushed it too. Gregory Cochran has been hyperventilating over it and calling anyone who disagree names.

    Something very weird about this.

    • Replies: @HA
  129. danand says:

    Cuoma says “New York needs a minimum of 30,000 additional ventilators within the next two weeks, when the outbreak is expected to peak.”

    If there is a need for say 200-300K additional ventilators nationwide, and in a hurry, is there a line item for them in the $2 Trillion bail-out-bill? 300,000 super expedited GE Carescape R860’s, or equivalents, would run ~$20,000 a pop. That’s going to require $6,000,000,000 ($6B) prepaid or with iron clad guarantees; prior to fast ramp manufacture.

    If there’s nothing set aside in the bill, perhaps part of the $25 billion slated for assistance to the airline industry, those guys who enabled world-wide spread the virus, could be re-appropriated?

    • Replies: @Faraday's Bobcat
  130. Ron Unz says:
    @Jack D

    An uncontrolled pandemic (which we are not going to have anyway) is GOOD for the economy and for working people once it is over. After the Black Death, wages went up because labor was more scarce. Killing off mainly older and sicker people controls future health care costs, it makes the math better for social security and pensions, etc.

    Hmmm… It really sounds like our government should have considered unleashing a huge epidemic years ago in order to solve our festering economic and social problems. Getting rid of ten or twenty million Americans would certainly reduce housing costs and traffic problems.

    And consider what idiots the Chinese leaders are. They locked down 700 million people for a couple of months and did considerable damage to their economy merely to keep the death toll down to around 3,500. If they’d just done nothing, they might have been lucky enough to eliminate fifty or sixty million Chinese, gaining exactly the benefits you suggest. This proves once and for all that the Chinese are much less intelligent than the IQ tests suggest.

  131. peterike says:

    Well in these troubled times, you can ease your minds knowing that many of our future Ruling Class Overlords are hightailing it back to China in the ease and luxury of private jets, in order to be safe.

    https://nypost.com/2020/03/25/chinese-students-pay-20k-for-private-jet-flights-out-of-us-as-coronavirus-spreads/

    I don’t know how the rich girls will manage without their white boyfriends, but they can always Facetime or what not.

    As a side note, as the rantings of Corvinus have increased in number — likely quarantine related as he can’t go to his usual job at the DMV — I’ve found the best policy is simply to scroll right on past his posts. Really, it’s much the best way to deal with him! Try it.

  132. @Jack D

    All those people changing bed pans in nursing homes would be more productive if they were working in a factory making stuff.

    Euthanasia in the name of productivity? Which factory in China would that be? How about the societal value of a gender studies degree?

  133. If they just gave the $6Tn directly to our 300M US Citizens, that would be $20,000 for every man, woman and child or about $70,000 per household. I think that would do a Hell of a lot more to stimulate the economy than giving it to Goldman Sachs, don’t you?

    https://www.philstockworld.com/

    Just think what we could do. Millions of working families could pay off their mortgages, buy new gas-guzzling trucks and battery cars, and take trips on planes to resorts all over the world where they will wear masks and dine in restaurants on fine wines and fresh fish from the farm.

    Airlines would be forced to compete with each other on quality of service to customers. Why has this idea never occurred to anybody before?

    And who needs banks? Everyone can over switch to savings and loans and leave the banks to their own misery, so that they will have to offer incentives to attract robbers to relieve the boredom. “Welcome to Ex-Royal Bank of Sussex, now camera-free for new anonymous account customers!!”

    We have nothing to fear but fear itself.

  134. BenKenobi says:
    @Whiskey

    *Mortal Kombat announcer voice*

    Whiskey vs Coronavinus, Round 1. FIGHT!

    • Thanks: Redneck farmer
  135. Jack D says:
    @epebble

    we will rapidly descend into a third world nation that will make immigrating to South America or Eastern Europe attractive.

    You mean we would be deprived of the wisdom of Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders – how could we ever survive this calamity?

    You have no idea what you are talking about. I don’t know about you but I have been to my ancestral shtetl in Ukraine. The economic level of the US would have to decline maybe 90% before it would be attractive to live Ukraine (even putting aside all racial considerations). And what makes you think that E. Europe or S. America would have you?

    • Replies: @peterike
  136. keypusher says:
    @Corvinus

    And, thanks, Mr. Sailer, for feigning ignorance. LOL–So, uh, what just happened? Why not actually comment on Trump’s proposal to “open up” the U.S. by Easter?

    This was a good post overall, but our host’s “what just happened” title was in reaction to the $x trillion stimulus that just happened. He wasn’t being disingenuous.

  137. Anonymous[123] • Disclaimer says:
    @LaserBaker

    Is this $1200 an actual gift, or am I just going to owe $1200 on my taxes next year?

    In we were a serious country, you would owe $1200 on your taxes next year.

  138. Corvinus says:
    @Whiskey

    “Again you don’t get.”

    The issue here is YOU don’t get it.

    “It’s Staff Sgt. Samuel K Doe, mass expulsions of non Whites, Race based civil war, genocide of White people and counter genocide of non Whites. Think Eastern Front, Yugoslavia in the 1990s and Syria.”

    Fear porn is your game, Whiskey. Wait, let me guess, the darkies get all the nubile white women in the end, right?

    “People are one homeless stint away from slaughtering their neighbors. There is no margin of error.”

    I’ll wait for the movie to come out. Actually…

    • Replies: @Whiskey
  139. Danindc says:
    @Tiny Duck

    Good point TD. Chad, The Central African Republic and Gabon have been leading the way in immunosuppressant pharmacology. I’m glad someone has been paying attention.

  140. Jack D says:
    @Ron Unz

    Look, no one would have recommended getting nuked to the Japanese either. But it turned out that losing the war was the best thing that ever happened to them economically. And this even though their war losses were skewed toward young, productive people.

    Life is funny that way. Unintended consequences and all that. No humane society would want to intentionally knock off a good chunk of their older population. But every cloud has a silver lining. If life gives you lemons, you make lemonade. All those underfunded government pension plans – guess what, if Corona-chan is all that you are saying she is, they’re not underfunded anymore.

    • Replies: @Daniel Williams
    , @Thomas
  141. Regret says:
    @LaserBaker

    There was some debate about this. I believe the final version was “actually a gift”.

    Though obviously the money is coming from somewhere.

  142. @Ron Unz

    Mr. Unz, please review relevant data as relates inflection points. That is inf-l-ection, with an “L”. Also review relevant patterns as relates a constellation of viruses – many per year, since 1918, most of which go unnoticed (which is not to say they do not result in hospital visits). By Monday the 30th the numbers will be perfectly clear and those who know how to read them will be able to say where this is going.
    We don’t need … one more atom … on the alarmist side.

  143. Anonymous[123] • Disclaimer says:
    @Smithsonian_2

    UK banks are currently offering 3-month mortgage holidays to anyone that needs them. Naturally, your debt continues to accrue interest over that period, you just don’t need to make payments.

    That isn’t unfair.

  144. It seems like it was only yesterday that Trump and Congress were bickering over a few billion dollars to build a wall along the border with Mexico, so it is great to see Congress and the White House working so well together on worthy projects.

    Si se puede! Yes we can!

    Now that we know there are trillions of dollars waiting in the wings to be deployed at a moment’s notice, hopefully by Easter we will have the Great Walls of Mexico and Canada, Medicare for all, free college for all, and six weeks paid vacation for all and our people will stop emigrating to China.

    Good on you, Mr. Trump! I knew you would come good in the end

  145. @Anonymous

    … the USSR failure simply involved a general decline in living standards (as money grew increasingly worthless) that killed quite a few people through stresses during old age and attempts to flee into various drugs (primarily alcohol) by those whose niche in the USSR’s economy vanished with that economy.

    Welcome to the future Western Central Bankers and Policy Makers have designed for us.

  146. @Ron Unz

    I did Ph.D. research in predictive analytics. All of these predictive models are based on extrapolation from existing data. The only existing data we have on CV comes from at-risk populations, which skew very high. This means the models are going to predict some scary potential outcomes.

    If we look at the cruise however we see a large number of infected people in a small contained space. CFR was 0.6%, and all the fatalities were in the 70+ age group. This suggests that the virus is dangerous, but it’s not highly contagious, and it isn’t devastatingly deadly.

    Locking down healthy people may not be the best approach to protecting the vulnerable. It would probably be better to support at-risk people in sheltering in place and isolating so that they will not crowd the medical system due to a surge exposure. Building exposure in the general population is probably a good thing because it will help to generate herd immunity.

    IANAD, just a semi-informed speculation here.

    • Agree: Chrisnonymous
  147. @Anon

    Governors are starting to ban the use of effective drugs.

    • Replies: @Lagertha
    , @anon
  148. @Hapalong Cassidy

    Yes, but the imprtant thing is that the Top 5 of companies like Boeing get to continue to stuff their pockets at 30x to 50x the little people.

  149. @The Wild Geese Howard

    In light of all the showboating going on, out there AND in here, one wonders if the death toll from this thing will be fixed at six million, no matter what actually happens.

    Maybe we should just plug that number into any formula we want to find all the other numbers we are wondering about, and then make plans accordingly. Let’s be sure to include a line item in the economic package to pay for a coronavirus museum in D.C. and another one in NYC.

    Get ready for more drama, the way only New Yorkers can push it on you, and a future President Cuomo.

    I don’t have a quantitative background, so I will cease and desist from commenting on tautological, circular math based on imagined numbers. Math that relies on its own results to create its own givens and parameters. Not imaginary numbers, which in fact have their uses, but really imagined numbers.

    This thing could get even worse than what anybody here has said so far, or it could not. Anybody who claims to know with any certainty is… something.

    (I will disavow any knowledge that I wrote this comment.)

  150. @Anonymous

    Let New York be locked down and locked up the rest of the year, Ron. Why do the rest of us have to perform penance indefinitely to aggrandize their dysfunctional fiefdom.

    You obviously never lived in NYC (specifically Manhattan); You owe everthing to your social betters. /s

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @sayless
  151. @LondonBob

    True….with 800+ Americans dead from the China Coronavirus so far, we should expect it to peak in about 4 weeks.

    If the fatality rate is .4% -we can estimate that 200,000 Americans were already infected 4 weeks ago , since it takes 4 weeks to succumb to this virus after being infected and we expect about 800 deaths this week. .if the number infected doubled each week then we have 3 million Americans infected today and should expect 12,000 deaths in 4 weeks.

  152. @Alexander Turok

    Correct. The alleged bailout of the banks wasn’t free money, it was cheap loans.

    • Replies: @Alexander Turok
  153. @RadicalCenter

    And free ponies for all.

    If the government took up retail banking, there’d be no competent underwriting.

  154. @Not my economy

    6 trillion dollars and the people get a $1200 one time payment

    That $1200 is going to keep you in sawdust biscuits, roach paste, and your sleep tube for years, goy!

    • Replies: @Not my economy
  155. @Ron Unz

    I am wondering if you can clarify this for me. The math is simple, but it seems to rely somewhat on its own answers to supply its own parameters. Respectfully, I fear I am probably wrong, but I seek clarification, thus (from my own previous comments):

    [MORE]

    Number of infected = Number of Deaths / Mortality_Rate *2^(Mortality_Period/Doubling_Period)

    It might be very difficult to estimate two of the factors:

    Mortality Rate. Knowing this requires knowing the total number of cases that existed when the dead on any given day contracted the virus. Have we really known this with any accuracy at any time? If we haven’t really known how many cases existed at any given time, then how can we know the mortality rate?

    Doubling Period. Related to the above. Plus, the accounting of total cases becomes more effective as more tests are mass produced and used. We find more because we have more tools to do it. Thus the Doubling Period factor is confounded by increasingly sensitive measurement of one of its own factors, total cases at any given time.

    The equation thus seems to possibly be tautological or circular. If the denominator Mortality Rate cannot be known without knowing how many infected existed at any given time, then the whole equation relies on its own result to achieve its result.

    I don’t know if I have this wrong. Any clarification, if time allows, would be respectfully appreciated. I do know that equations can help examine different scenarios with different values plugged in, even when assumptions have to be made, but I wonder if this equation relies somewhat on its own results to supply those assumptions and therefore is of limited value.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  156. Anonymous[337] • Disclaimer says:
    @A123

    You think so?

    Not forgetting the fact that China is the biggest money spinner the human race has ever seen – obscene levels of profit are concentrated in very few hands, money that buys politicians like hot cakes – do you really think that the gangbangers of Baltimore etc will sit on their asses for hours and solder up micro electronics?. I am afraid to say *that* is the ‘coming American labor force’.

    • Replies: @Anon
  157. peterike says:
    @Jack D

    The economic level of the US would have to decline maybe 90% before it would be attractive to live Ukraine

    I dunno, but maybe, just maybe, that living standard has something to do with nearly all the wealth in Ukraine being owned by a tiny minority of Jewish oligarchs.

  158. @Jack D

    I don’t have the data from the Diamond Princess in front of me but it should be possible to infer an age adjusted death rate for the general population from the Diamond Princess death rates and age distribution.

    I concur with you and AnotherDad that the Diamond Princess dataset is probably the best we are going to get under the circumstances. There is no such thing as a perfect dataset, this situation is precisely what the saw, “The perfect is the enemy of the good,” refers to.

    There is a good, readable take on that data here:

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2020/03/16/diamond-princess-mysteries/

    The author of that piece concludes the age-adjusted IFR is around 1%.

    Totally worth nuking the global economy for.

  159. @Jim Don Bob

    Jim Bob, hello to one of my favorites. We are well thank you.

  160. @Anon

    But now Cuomo’s complaining that it does too little for NY

  161. @Buzz Mohawk

    @The Wild Geese Howard

    If there was actual reality on the ground of over-run hospitals – it would be the news. In the absence of that we have Cuomo joining forces with Unz to ring sirens.

    There will be an increase in hospital flow-traffic in NY and the wider NE for the next two weeks – expect the very most possible media and social media juicing out of this – it will be hard to tell it isn’t apocalyptic, except for those exercising discipline of “wait – is this really what apocalypse looks like?”

    Then it will clear. With a whimper.

    I could be mistaken – data will be clear on Monday. If data points for apocalypse then I’ll say so. This minute – just, not, seeing it. Those who are *definitely* feeling it, and know for sure “this is the one, this is the one”, are advised to have their BS detectors serviced.

  162. Anonymous[123] • Disclaimer says:
    @A123

    Current death-rates are inaccurate.

    Please elaborate.

  163. New York City Democrat Billionaires doing jack shit as usual. maybe Cuomo can cry to them. didn’t Bloomberg JUST run for President? so he wanted to lead the country, but he can’t lead his checkbook to donate a dollar for New York City?

    why does New York need a bailout at all? did they get tired of telling us flyover country people that they’re smarter, they’re richer, they’re better? now they need our help?

    hey NYC billionaires – buy some ventilators. spend a few million funding drug trails. donate a couple billion to the bloated state budget so the pensions can be paid.

    no? no interest? don’t care? just want the money and screw everybody else? yeah, that’s kind of what i thought.

    Escape From New York these people, stat. New York City is hostile to the rest of America and it’s a sanctuary city that openly attacked Trump for 3 years. let them die. i think New York is literally still investigating Trump’s taxes.

  164. @Ron Unz

    Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised if a thousand New Yorkers per day are already dying by Easter,

    So why not lock down New York City in the same way that the Chinese eventually locked down Wujan? The Chinese didn’t close their whole country but their city-specific quarantine got the virus under control. https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/china/

    Let’s call it the “Snake Plisskin Plan.”

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
  165. @Smithsonian_2

    My last mortgage contract, set in 1987 allowed me 6 months without meeting payments anyway to tide me over normal complications such as redundancy.

    • Thanks: Jonathan Mason
    • Replies: @Smithsonian_6
  166. @UK

    If the Oxford University model is accurate, the results would mean the country has already acquired “herd immunity” through the unrecognised spread of Covid-19.

    So it should no longer be spreading with an R0 > 1, which does not appear to be the case.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    , @UK
  167. shredder says:

    The Defenders by Philip K. Dick.

    The US population is hiding underground because of nuclear war above ground against the Soviet Union. The world above is a slag heap. Robots, the leadies, are doing all of the risky work.

    But its not quite what it seems.

  168. @Ron Unz

    Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised if a thousand New Yorkers per day are already dying by Easter,

    So why not lock down New York City in the same way that the Chinese eventually locked down Wujan? The Chinese didn’t close their whole country but their city-specific quarantine got the virus under control. https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/china/

    Let’s call it the “Snake Plisskin Plan.”

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  169. @RichardTaylor

    Under 60, cancer patients of all ages and undiagnosed HIV infections and anorexics and type 2 diabetics who smoke.

  170. @jb

    What’s new is the real-world demonstration of how vulnerable a complex interconnected high-tech society really is, even to relatively mild contagions.

    Yup, we need to firewall our supply chains by moving to a Distributism model.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Distributism

  171. @rienzi

    Nailed it! This was the British Government strategy until the media got hold of the Imperial College model (helped by the trade unions?). The mob bayed, the school teachers abandoned their posts and the government crumbled.

  172. @Hypnotoad666

    It’s too late for that. If we are to believe the Chinese communist government, they locked down Wuhan before much happened outside (save for a few Chinese travelers spreading the virus around the world before they told anybody about it, but oh well.)

    There will be more New York Cities soon enough, because they are already well on their way.

  173. @RichardTaylor

    About 600,000 Italians die per year — let’s say 1650 per day, on average. Italy has been losing 600 to 800 people per day for almost a week. So roughly 40 to 50 percent of all daily deaths now are due to this Wuhan virus. (A far too simplistic analysis, but in the ballpark.) And Lombardy has been under lockdown for a while.

    I personally think the reaction in the United States has been overdone, and we will end up better than Italy. And I think 200 or 300 deaths a day out of 8000 or so is not the end of the world for America, beyond the individuals and families in sorrow.

    People do need to get back to work, but not at the price of it being responsible for half of American deaths for weeks and weeks. We are going to have to figure out how to really really isolate the at risk.

  174. @RichardTaylor

    Do you think any of us will ever personally know someone who is made sick by this “pandemic”? I mean just one?

    Colleagues’ wife.

    OR SO HE CLAIMS!

  175. UK says:
    @Travis

    No, in Italy evidence says 13 days. 5 days incubation and 8 days further until death.

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
  176. Spud Boy says:
    @prime noticer

    And when it turns out to be a giant nothing burger, the Chicken Littles will say it was because we shut everything down for a month.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
    • Replies: @Jmaie
  177. Very good piece here from an extremely intelligent below-the-line commentator in The Guardian, whom I have followed for a while. I believe the author is a motoring journalist.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/mar/24/coronavirus-crisis-change-world-financial-global-capitalism#comment-139180548

    I do actually wonder whether this crisis will mark the complete undoing of US Republicanism as we know it.

    Think about it – one of the reasons they’re in such denial about its seriousness is because they know the only way to truly fight the Coronavirus is with a nationalized, centrally-controlled, largely free-at-the-point-of-use health infrastructure. And the Republicans are the party of private health-sector lobbyists and misused ‘freedom’ rhetoric.

    Trump’s policies will kill thousands and leave the spread of the virus unchecked. And so how will the world respond? They’ll shut America out. They won’t want to travel to America, they won’t want American goods, they won’t want American visitors. And the rendering toxic of the American population will have been not through an inability to act, but to an adherence to an economic orthodoxy as extreme as Communism. It is, in effect, capitalism’s equivalent of Stalin presiding over a famine while exporting record amounts of grain.

    And when the time ultimately comes for America to choose a new direction, and the choice is between progressive (probably) Democrats offering the US what more quickly-recovered and more prosperous countries have, in the form of a state that actually cares about them, above the party that was willing to sacrifice your grandparents for the sake of Wall Street bonuses, I suspect that even Trump’s base (which is older than the national average) won’t think twice about backing it.

    What we’re seeing in this crisis, is the death knell of neoliberalism. It is the ideology that has no solutions.

    Personally I think that the coronavirus may disappear as quickly as it appeared and that it will all be over in a few weeks, but there is also a strong argument on the other side. As Ron Unz says, eventually we will know who was right, (and then if we were wrong we will quickly forget like with WMD in Iraq.)

  178. UK says:
    @Ron Unz

    Not if the percentage of infected is much, much higher and therefore there is substantially less of the population for the virus to burn through.

  179. @Philip Owen

    My last mortgage contract, set in 1987 allowed me 6 months without meeting payments anyway to tide me over normal complications such as redundancy

    Yes, it is not uncommon, but the banks are just reminding people that it is available and offering it without quibbles.

  180. J.Ross says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    So what were you busy toking when Nancy was smoking baby parts and decided to fight for the relative fuel efficiency of aircraft engines?
    >but doctors said
    I don’t care what Johns Hopkins graduates said. Is it an emergency or not? The same bill has been held up in the House for more times than can be counted for no reason at all. That exonerates Trump and proves that there is no emergency. Also, for the information of newspaper readers, it’s Trump who is asking for UBI and the Democrats who are pulling put all the stops to avoid this.

  181. MarkinPNW says:
    @LaserBaker

    The tax will come as inflation of the prices of the essential good and services that we will be buying!

  182. @Smithsonian_2

    It’s not exactly SciFi but “The Mandibles” by Lionel Shriver provides a realistic depiction of what might happen to an upper middle class American family, as the USA sinks into economic failure from 2029-2047. https://www.amazon.com/s?k=the+mandibles+a+family+2029-2047+by+lionel+shriver&i=stripbooks&crid=XOYS8J6VPQPG&sprefix=The+Mandibles%2Caps%2C169&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_2_13

    I cannot recomend this book too highly.

  183. @UK

    In South Wales, Gwent Dragons played rugby against Benneton from Venice on 6 March.Cases started to rise on 19 March. So incubate, symptoms, report and test = 13 days. No deaths from 6 March contacts yet. 25 days looks good.

  184. @Jonathan Mason

    Italy, Spain, and France all have universal healthcare systems, regardless of how they differ on how this is achieved. Each of these first world countries, both in total deaths and daily deaths, far exceed the United States, although their respective populations range between 50 to 65 million.

    The United Kingdom, again with universal healthcare, has roughly 70 million people, and suffered half of the deaths that the United States has, with a population of 330 million.

    Now, South Korea and Taiwan have done quite well with universal healthcare and this crisis. I am happy for those nations. But they merely prove universal healthcare can work, not that it will work. And I’m open to either argument… though I think culture matters.

    Regardless, there is nothing more comical than a worldly, sophisticated, anti-American Brit. I mean, we speak the same language and have access to the same information sources….how could he possiblity be so ignorant?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  185. @Ron Unz

    Getting rid of ten or twenty million Americans would certainly reduce housing costs and traffic problems.

    Getting rid of ten or twenty million illegals ought to do the trick.

  186. @danand

    300,000 super expedited GE Carescape R860’s, or equivalents, would run ~$20,000 a pop. That’s going to require $6,000,000,000 ($6B) prepaid or with iron clad guarantees; prior to fast ramp manufacture.

    The money’s not the only problem. Those vents have all kinds of plastic and rubber parts that have to come out of custom molds and they can only come out so fast. They can go to three shifts a day but that only gets us a 3x increase in rate. It’s like you can’t produce a baby in a month by putting 9 women on the job.

    The money and urgency might let them shortcut some time-consuming quality checks though.

  187. @Buzz Mohawk

    Buzz, well stated and the thought of a Cuomo presidency makes me ill.

    • Replies: @Kylie
  188. Anonymous[113] • Disclaimer says:
    @Hypnotoad666

    I liked the concert tour better. Four acts, none of which were good for a three hour big show but each perfect for 45 minutes. And if you were on the front row, you got proof that stories about a certain songstress really being a man in drag were horseshit.

  189. @unit472

    Prince Charles has it!

    I heard on the radio he’s self isolating on his estate in Scotland.

    Of course the servants must stay at least six feet away, right?
    He’ll be naked the entire time because no one can dress him now.

  190. Travis says:
    @Buffalo Joe

    I refuse to get tested, why would I expose myself to long lines waiting with hundreds of sick people ?
    I forbid my wife from being tested, although she had a cold last week and is a school teacher in New Jersey…thus likely she has been exposed to the virus via her hundreds of students. I will not allow my wife to get tested, because this puts me and our children at risk of getting the virus. I keep her locked in our bedroom to be safe.

    the latest news reports that 800 Americans have died from the China Coronavirus….so if the death rate is .5% and it takes 3-4 weeks to die we can calculate that 160,000 Americans were infected 3-4 weeks ago and 1 to 3 million Americans may be infected today.

    If the fatality rate is 1% then 80,000 Americans were infected 3-4 weeks ago. No need to get people tested, we can calculate the number of Americans infected based on the data we already have.

  191. Hibernian says:
    @Anonymous

    Which is only one week later.

  192. @Reg Cæsar

    “If you can make it to Point Nemo in the Pacific, your nearest human neighbors will be one the ISS when it passes overhead.”

    Earthbound humans might be able to talk to the ISS.

    Some ISS crew members make random, unscheduled, amateur radio voice contacts with earth-bound radio amateurs, often called “hams”. They can make radio contacts during their breaks, pre-sleep time and before and after mealtime. Astronauts have contacted thousands of hams around the world. The work schedules of the ISS crew dictate when they are able to operate the radios. The crew’s usual waking period is 0730 – 1930 UTC. The most common times to find a crew member making casual periods are about one hour after waking and before sleeping, when they have personal time. They’re usually free most of the weekend, as well. (The current crew work schedule is published on the NASA website.)

    https://www.ariss.org/contact-the-iss.html

  193. Anon7 says:

    Frank Herbert’s 1982 novel The White Plague was so disturbing I only read it once.

    In the story, a molecular biologist is at a conference in Ireland with his family, when they are killed by a random IRA car bomb. He’s upset. He designs a virus that is carried by men, but kills only women. If his wife dies, then all those IRA women should die. He releases it in Ireland.

    Ultimately, it travels around the world, killing every single woman on Earth, except for a few kept safe in hermetically sealed isolation. Without women, there won’t be a next generation.

    In Greg Bear’s Blood Music, published as a novella in 1983 and later fleshed out as a novel, clever spergy biotechnologist Vergil Ulam creates simple biological computers based on his own lymphocytes. Told to flush his samples, he injects them into himself instead and carries them out into the world. It’s worth reading the novel to find out what happens.

    In Oryx and Crake, a 2003 novel by Margaret Atwood, the world is repeatedly devastated by bioengineered cures and plagues that eventually kill most of the world’s people.

    And don’t forget other fan favorites, like Stephen King’s The Stand and The Cobra Event by Richard Preston, or obscure items like Journals of the Plague Years by Norman Spinrad and The Years of Rice and Salt by Kim Stanley Robinson.

    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
  194. @The Wild Geese Howard

    “Maybe no beer and cable TV is why the other caretakers went crazy and killed their families, sir.”
    You may be right Smithers. If this one goes crazy and kills his family, we’ll make changes next year.”

  195. @International Jew

    To be more specific, it’s artificially cheap, subsidized loans. If the government bought food for 100$ and sold it to you for 90$, what would you call it? Not exactly free money, but pretty close…

  196. anon[246] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    Very good piece here from an extremely intelligent below-the-line commentator in The Guardian,

    Lol @Comrade Mason.

    That article is already out of date, as a real journalist would know, and as you should know just by surfing links off of Drudge. Laziness is not a virtue. Anyway, in a few weeks we’ll be able to test that Guardianista’s text.

    Good thing Italy and Spain have just what you and the Guardianistas are pushing for, so there’s not problems in either country with COVID. You should be grateful that Trump’s Cure will probably be available to you if you need it.

    • Replies: @anon
  197. @The Alarmist

    Don’t you mean, 蝙蝠肉现在半价?

    • LOL: The Alarmist
    • Replies: @The Alarmist
  198. Whiskey says: • Website
    @Corvinus

    Look it’s great you’ve got a trust fund. I had the fun task of furloughing my direct reports today.

    They need the money. Unlike you most people need to work. I have dependents like my reports and that means I need a paycheck. Which means back to work.

    I’ve seen the Rodney King Riots. Imagine that for a month with no cops and no guard and then the Chris Kyle types having enough and staging an enlisted mans coup. It’s happened before.

    People can stand maybe three weeks without pay. Most would kill to keep their car. I have no desire to see Electric Boogaloo and would prefer to get back to work. I have bills to pay.

    Fifty percent unemployed = ultra violent civil war. This is not Mexico where everyone is poor any way. Put half of White Americans on the dole and they’ll figure the money goes further if everyone else is … dead. Remember the bonus Army? We don’t have the margin of error they had then. No General since Ike won a war.

    What happens when Newsome can’t pay cops or the Guard in five months because no tax revenue?

    Boogaloo.

    • Thanks: Inquiring Mind
    • Replies: @Corvinus
  199. @Thoughts

    The garlic mustard (a non-native invasive weed distantly related to cauliflower) is emerging already this spring.

    When I whinged about the never-ending battle with weeding, my hippie-Lutheran friend told me the purpose of the garlic mustard is to avoid occasions for sin.

    I am not an expert on Lutheran doctrine, but pulling the mustard is a socially isolated activity because no one else appears to be interested in it, the stoops and squats are a substitute of the gym and an expression of solidarity with farm laborers (see the Doonesbury cartoon https://www.gocomics.com/doonesbury/1982/09/18), and it gets me out of the house.

  200. @J.Ross

    ATM the word is that the House Democrats may step aside and approve on a voice vote, if not unanimously. I’ll believe it when I see it, and be happy to do so.

    FWIW, I’ve collected some Highlights of the Pelosi Coronavirus Wish List for reference.
    Below the fold:

    [MORE]

    [Pelosi’s bill] would require airlines receiving bailout money to promise to go carbon-neutral by 2025, revoke several Trump executive orders on unionization within the federal workforce, impose mandatory nationwide early voting and same-day voter registration, and forgive “a minimum of” $10,000 of student-loan debt across the board–even for wealthy graduates.

    Also, any company taking coronavirus bailout money would also have to permanently raise their minimum wage to $15 by the start of next year.

    “Everything we’re suggesting just relates to COVID-19,” Mrs. Pelosi told CNN. “It’s not about making long — for the future. It’s about COVID.”

    The bill would automatically renew millions of foreign guest-workers’ work permits. It would also, for the first time, write a specific protection for illegal-immigrant “Dreamers” into law, ordering the Homeland Security secretary to renew hundreds of thousands of DACA permits.

    The bill would have automatically renewed the immigration status of anyone whose current permits expired 30 days before the bill is enacted, and at least a year after it becomes law. It would apply to anyone here on Temporary Protected Status, DACA or another deferred deportation program, and regular guest-worker programs such as high-skilled H-1B visa-holders, farm workers on H-2A visas and seasonal non-farm workers on H-2B visas.

    It would even apply to those here on short-term tourist or business visas.

    https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/mar/24/nancy-pelosi-retreats-coronavirus-stimulus-wish-li/

    Diversity provisions

    The House Democrats’ bill requires that any company getting coronavirus-related aid disclose its diversity stats, including its employees’ race, gender, pay, corporate board diversity and the structure of its offices that deal with diversity and inclusion.

    The reports, which will be made public within a year of the companies accepting federal coronavirus-related assistance, will also include the “number and dollar value invested with minority-and-women owned suppliers … including professional services (legal and consulting) and asset managers, and deposits and other accounts with minority depository institutions, as compared to all vendor investments.”

    Postal Service bailout

    One section of the bill would eliminate $11 billion worth of debt for the U.S. Postal Service — money that it currently owes to the Treasury Department. It would also require the Treasury to “eliminate the $3 billion annual borrowing limit in current law,” according to a summary of the bill released by House Democrats.

    Union boosting

    In addition to requiring each airline that receives money through the bill to have a union representative on its board, the House Democrats’ summary says the bill would nullify a variety of executive orders issued by the Trump administration on collective bargaining.

    Student loans

    Democrats’ summary of their bill would eliminate “a minimum of $10,000 of federal and private student loan debt for each indebted borrower.” Student loan forgiveness has been a go-to issue for Democrats in Congress and on the presidential campaign trail.

    Voter registration

    The House Democrats’ bill has a variety of election-related mandates, including that states allow at least 15 days of early voting for elections and no-excuse absentee mail-in voting — two things that could be useful in holding elections during the continuing coronavirus threat.

    But it also prohibits states from “imposing additional conditions or requirements on the eligibility of a voter to cast an absentee ballot such as notarization or witness signatures, and prohibits requiring identification to obtain an absentee ballot.”

    $15 minimum wage for companies accepting assistance

    Two different sections in the House Democrats’ summary of the bill address minimum wage. One provision would “require corporations that receive any federal assistance” to pay all of its workers at least $15 per hour. In addition to the minimum wage, that same provision includes a ban on golden parachutes, restricted bonuses and compensation for executives, a ban on stock buybacks and a ban on companies changing their collective bargaining agreements.

    Obamaphones

    One section of Pelosi’s bill allocates $1 billion and calls for federal authorities to immediately expand the “emergency lifeline broadband benefit” for every household that contains at least one “qualifying low-income consumer.” That would include any “mass-market retail service by wire or radio that provides the capability to transmit data to and receive data from all or substantially all Internet endpoints, including any capabilities that are incidental to and enable the operation of the communications service.”

    That benefit would include cell phones.

    The National Republican Congressional Committee said the House bill is “full of unrelated liberal goodies, including the return of the Obamaphone,” a program that the Government Accountability Office found was “rife with fraud” according to a Washington Times report at the time.

    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/whats-in-democrats-coronavirus-bill-arts-funding-union-help-and-more

  201. Lagertha says:
    @Dave Pinsen

    Shhh! Let Cuomo get his ass handed to him when rich New Yorkers learn that a Moroccan gov minister also recovered, using Dr. Zelenko’s recipe. Dr. Zelenko may deserve a Nobel; I feel it is highly appropriate.

    Rich, prominent New Yorkers whose loved ones are suffering, are gonna skin Cuomo alive if he denies any of these New Yorkers (the most selfish, whiny and arrogant people in the world) choloroquine.

    Cuomo just ruined his chances, ever, of running for President – what a total rube! But, he is not very intelligent…too prone to hysteria and hyperbole. He is kind of a stereotype of hot-headed Italians. No one wants Tony Soprano-style leadership: who lives who dies, because, reasons.

    • Replies: @Not My Economy
  202. anon[355] • Disclaimer says:
    @anon

    LOL @ myself for being slow on the uptake. I re-read the Comrade’s comment at the Guardian.

    Is it a coincidence that a “very intelligent commenter” at the Guardian writes a whole lot like…Comrade Mason? Would Comrade Mason stoop to linking to his own comments on another site, essentially sock puppeting here?

    Perish the thought!
    lol

    @All
    Zinc has a proven track record vs. colds, which are also corona virii. Everyone must get zinc, but not too much because the dosage curve is U shaped. There’s plenty at all sorts of groceries, so go buy some and start taking it today as a preventative.

    • Replies: @Jonathan Mason
  203. nebulafox says:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    I was going to add “that’s money we don’t even have, folks”, but the comment timed out. No, I don’t think it is sustainable. There’s a reason that many huge revolutions in history-the French Revolution is a great example-tend to have a background in fiscal insolvency. I don’t think we’re there yet, but the signs don’t look good.

    “Apres moi, le deluge” seems to sum up the mentality of American elites for the last couple of decades. I think from Feinstein to McConnell, from Biden to Trump, from the Pentagon brass to the CEOs to the head honchos of the MSM: that’s what they are all hoping for. To successfully die with all they got from pillaging this country, 90s Russia style.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
  204. @Travis

    Testing is useful for the authorities because it tells them not just how many but who.

    I do like your quick&dirty estimation method though.

  205. HA says:
    @RichardTaylor

    “Democrats had their obvious motives, but a lot of other guys pushed it too. Gregory Cochran has been hyperventilating over it and calling anyone who disagree names.

    Something very weird about this.”

    What were the Democrats’ motives back when they were telling people to ignore the virus and go out and enjoy the Chinese New Year? Talk about weird.

    What’s also weird is that on a site where so many people are worried that the US is turning into Brazil and Sweden, a number of those people are now saying, “You know, we really just need to be doing the same thing that Brazil and Sweden are doing.”

    That being the case, a little more self-awareness, or at least appreciation of the irony, might be appropriate.

    • Replies: @vhrm
    , @Louis Renault
  206. @Lagertha

    He’s not denying rich people anything. He’s ensuring that supply of chloroquine remains available for the rich. It’s a craven move, but this is politics. Reward your supporters at the expense of your opponents.

    • Replies: @Lagertha
  207. Corvinus says:
    @Whiskey

    “Look it’s great you’ve got a trust fund.”

    I get it, the strawman argument is one of your friends, but they leave hang out to try constantly. Why you go back to her is telling.

    “Imagine that for a month with no cops and no guard and then the Chris Kyle types having enough and staging an enlisted mans coup.”

    You have a wild imagination.

    “I have no desire to see Electric Boogaloo and would prefer to get back to work.”

    And with social distancing and observing the stay at home order, you won’t have to.

    “Fifty percent unemployed = ultra violent civil war”

    Fantasy Island has been off the air for nearly 4 decades.

    “What happens when Newsome can’t pay cops or the Guard in five months because no tax revenue?”

    The darkies will sell off the white women as slave labor. Where you been, Holmes?

  208. Anon[567] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous

    The loss of nail polish salons will devastate black women. You eeevvviiiill racist you.

  209. @Jack D

    After the Black Death, wages went up because labor was more scarce.

    Yeah, with all those eighty-year-olds finally out of the workforce, the boom times will come roaring back. It’s not like there are millions of third-worlders eager to replace them.

    Just think, soon we could all be as prosperous as the average fourteenth-century manciple or reeve!

    • LOL: Mr McKenna
  210. @Corvinus

    The darkies will sell off the white women as slave labor. Where you been, Holmes?

    Maybe he’s commenting from Rotherham or Rochdale, Sherlock?

  211. @nebulafox

    To be fair it wasn’t the $9/hr code monkeys who caused the problem. It was the management of Boeing who let an aerodynamically unstable plane be built. The Max is a fundamentally flawed design.

  212. Anonymous[103] • Disclaimer says:
    @Thoughts

    My dance classes were cancelled 🙁 🙁

    My gym was cancelled 🙁 🙁

    All my husbands stuff that he’s involved with was cancelled 🙁 🙁

    Stuff like that is important to your soul

    Maybe you could give ted talks to holocaust survivors.

    Tell them how you make it thru your fucking day. Give them some hope.

    • Disagree: vhrm
  213. Lagertha says:
    @Not My Economy

    but, the cat always comes out of the bag. And, once poor people in Queens find out, especially POC, shits gonna come down on Cuomo and rich folks. AOC is very sensitive as to how her people are doing…and she hates Cuomo.

    I even imagine kidnappings of wives, rich kids (students who are home) for ransom. Democrats wanted dystopia; they are gonna get it in spades. Rich people are so not safe in NYC, SF, LA, DC. And, cops may not show up! hahaaahaaaaa Democrats’ hubris is gonna be their doom. I hope they burn in hell.

  214. Anon[567] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous

    For centuries White men and women stood in assembly lines, sat and stood over workbenches and laundry tubs, sat to see all clothing drapes etc by hand , made first tools, then machines istood to chop wood, and climbed all over buildings to build everything from Ancient Greek temples to the Roman aqueducts to the highest buildings in the world

  215. Ron Unz says:
    @Buzz Mohawk

    I am wondering if you can clarify this for me. The math is simple, but it seems to rely somewhat on its own answers to supply its own parameters. Respectfully, I fear I am probably wrong, but I seek clarification, thus (from my own previous comments):

    Well, I have to emphasize that I’m absolutely no expert on medical issues in general or the Coronavirus in particular. So I’m just relying upon the parameters that most of the medical professional involved with the Coronavirus epidemic seem to have found. Maybe they’re completely wrong.

    Almost everyone seems to claim that the death rate is normally around 1%, much higher for older/sicker people and lower for young/healthy ones. Since 5% require ICUs, when the ICUs run out, the death rate spikes to 5%. Since China had a massive outbreak and used testing/quarantines to try to track down almost every infected individual, they provided a huge dataset that supposedly supports this analysis. I think outbreaks elsewhere have also been consistent.

    The doubling-period very much depends upon local conditions, but I’m mostly seen estimates of 3-6 days floating around. Obviously, once there are major changes in behavior or government policy, those figures may dramatically change as well.

    These sorts of unknowns, variables, and disputes are exactly why I emphasized the general formula rather than use of particular parameters.

    • Thanks: Buzz Mohawk
    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
    , @Anonymous
  216. @Achmed E. Newman

    It’s the future, Mr. Newman.

    Neil

  217. Anon[567] • Disclaimer says:
    @Corvinus

    Given Whiskey’s opinions about women, I’m sure he’d be glad if every White woman disappeared into a slave raider ship.

    He wrote he has a family. Considering his oft written opinions about women, I don’t believe it.

  218. Kylie says:
    @Buffalo Joe

    Welcome back, Buffalo Joe.

    Cuomo is a walking horror. I don’t know how you stand him.

    • Replies: @Mr McKenna
  219. anon[134] • Disclaimer says:
    @Dave Pinsen

    This is fake news mostly. There was an executive order that was intended to prevent hoarding by prescribing for non covid usages. Look it up.

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
  220. Anonymous[123] • Disclaimer says:
    @The Alarmist

    You obviously never lived in NYC (specifically Manhattan); You owe everthing to your social betters. /s

    What do you mean?

    • Replies: @The Alarmist
  221. @Ron Unz

    Thank you for your reply. I understand and can see the usefulness of the general formula.

    On your site I waver between silly and serious (sometimes feeling embarrassed) and I appreciate your thoughtful explanation here with regard to a serious subject.

    Thanks for UR too, as always.

  222. @Kylie

    Cuomo is a walking horror. I don’t know how you stand him.

    Since he’s now being touted as a potential alternative to Biden, I’m curious which of the two you’d find more palatable, and why? I’m sort of agnostic on this for the moment.

    It does say something: that Dems aren’t exactly elated with Creepy Joe.
    Oh, and yeah, Bernie’s still in the race, right?

    • Replies: @Kylie
  223. @Travis

    I will not allow my wife to get tested, because this puts me and our children at risk of getting the virus. I keep her locked in our bedroom to be safe.

    Perfect. Thanks.

  224. @Jack D

    All those underfunded government pension plans – guess what, if Corona-chan is all that you are saying she is, they’re not underfunded anymore.

    Yeah, this thing’s been a real gift to the deficit hawks so far.

    If it gets as bad as Unz suggested, they might have to lower the age of social security benefits just to have something to do with all the money!

  225. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @Anon7

    The Years of Rice and Salt is excellent, and not just, or even mostly about a plague, though its premise starts with one.

  226. Kylie says:
    @Mr McKenna

    Cuomo vs. Biden can never be a question of “more palatable”, only less repulsive. Asking me to choose one as a presidential candidate is like asking me who I’d rather have sex with: Harvey Weinstein or Woody Allen.

    If forced to choose, I’d choose Biden. He’s stupid and creepy but ultimately biddable. Cuomo is a true believer. I think he’s more dangerous.

    • Agree: vhrm, Bill Jones
    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
    , @Mr McKenna
  227. @Kylie

    I’ve met Harvey Weinstein. Trust me: Pick Woody Allen.

    • Replies: @black sea
  228. Thomas says:
    @Jack D

    So it sounds like the @Jack D USA economic policy for the USA is:

    Step 1: Pandemics and nukes
    Step 2: ????
    Step 3: Profit!

    Okay!

    Incidentally, Florida had an increase of 500 detected cases today alone, a 25% jump.

    https://www.orlandosentinel.com/coronavirus/os-ne-coronavirus-wednesday-march-25-20200325-jcn3sgaqjnaahmmuqm6uajoqdm-story.html

    This is only a week after spring break in a state that’s has biggest cruise ship terminal in the mainland USA and where the governor is refusing to even consider a shutdown. If Corona-chan is as bad as some of the models indicate, and it gets a foothold in Florida’s senior community, we’re probably going to know in a couple of weeks whether it’s time for Trump to start working on his presidential library.

    • Replies: @AnotherDad
  229. @Kylie

    Thanks, and I also agree with Buzz (in theory anyway).

    • Replies: @Kylie
  230. vhrm says:
    @HA

    What were the Democrats’ motives back when they were telling people to ignore the virus and go out and enjoy the Chinese New Year? Talk about weird.

    Knee-jerk virtue signaling in reaction to the earlier hype about supposed anti-Asian hate incidents?

    • Replies: @HA
  231. @Travis

    “I keep her locked in our bedroom to be safe.”… Are your children okay with that?

  232. @Reg Cæsar

    lulz …

    买蛇我们给蝙蝠

  233. @Too Observant

    didn’t the French get kicked out of Algiers?

    No, they felt white guilt about it and they all sympathised with the rebels. They weren’t kicked out.It came from within.

    • Replies: @Too Observant
  234. @Ron Unz

    ” I wouldn’t be surprised if the New York death rate has reached 500 per day by Easter, perhaps even 1,000 per day. ”

    Ah, you’re only saying that to cheer me up.

    A great deal of the noise generated by the great and the good is camouflage to conceal the serious business of rejiggering (is one allowed to say that nowadays? Is it not redolent of niggardly?) the financial system. Bush the Lesser’s first attempt at a bank bailout of a mere $700 billion was rejected by Congress and Hank The Wank Paulson had to threaten Congress with “Tanks on the Streets”
    https://money.cnn.com/2008/09/29/news/economy/bailout/

    The final cost, of course was between 10 and 20 times that.

    The pyramid of debt which passes for the US economy needs a bigger bailout now and the China virus Pyramid of Death is the perfect lubricant to shove it up the American people.

  235. @Anonymous

    This is why you must pay for New York. Your’s is not to reason why, your’s is but to do and die.

  236. black sea says:
    @Buzz Mohawk

    I’d be curious to know what you made of that experience (meeting Weinstein).

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
  237. mousey says:
    @Travis

    I keep her locked in our bedroom to be safe.

    During a conversation with a stranger I was asked if I was married. My response was, “No, I have a dog.” The stranger asked me why it was better to have a dog than to be married. My response, “Let us consider that I was married and had a dog. I took both my wife and dog and locked both of them in the trunk of my car. When I came back and opened the trunk, can you guess which one would be happy to see me?”

  238. @Thomas

    Incidentally, Florida had an increase of 500 detected cases today alone, a 25% jump.

    I’m here–and nominally a “senior”–and i don’t know what’s going on. And neither do you, nor anyone else.

    But the key word above is “detected”. Just because the official cases are zooming up, doesn’t mean that actual infections are zooming up.

    The CDC utterly botched the testing, and so we couldn’t test when the sight-possible-infection-isolate-them-test-them-test-all-their-contacts-isolate-them protocol could have worked. And now we are testing more and more people each day so finding more and more cases, as older (last week’s) exposure works into cases with symptoms that present. But basically because of the testing botch by the CDC–i.e. the state establisment not “Trump”–we do not have a good baseline, because from the start we’ve never been able to “test anything that presents like CoVid-19.”

    My guess–only a guess–is that these isolation procedures have driven the replication ratio below 1. But we’re not going to know until it starts petering out.

    My take is in fact that we’re doing overkill and could be getting the same results simply with a basic regime:
    — sick people stay home–zero tolerance
    — mask up in any public indoor venue or crowded outdoor venue; (which apparently has also been botched by the CDCs and hospital administrators unpreparedness)
    — wash hands and hand sanitizer at entrance to public buildings

    But whatever is going on in the actual epidemic is masked by the massive catch-up-from-screw-up increase in testing.

  239. @The Wild Geese Howard

    For ducks sake not everything is about The Jews dude

    • Replies: @Charon
  240. @AnotherDad

    Keep an eye on daily fatalities , eventually the number of deaths per day will stop increasing and start to decline…..

    From the number of deaths we can determine the number of Americans infected 4 weeks ago based in the fatality rate being between .5% – 1%

    With 800 deaths this week we know that the number infected 4 weeks ago was at least 80,000 and could be as high as 160,000 (if the fatality rate is .5%)

    Since we know that about 1% will succumb to the virus within 4 weeks , the best estimate for the number of Americans infected 4 weeks ago is about 80,000, and if the number infected doubled each week we can estimate the number infected today is at about 640,000 Americans….but it probably doubled every 5 days so we have 1.2 million Americans infected today.

  241. @HA

    They were about setting the stage for “worse is better” and now they have the crisis they need to impose their ideology, kind of like the Virginia legislature.

    • Replies: @HA
  242. Florida has a “dashboard” where you can see the reported numbers county by county and see where the epidemic is. It is concentrated in the large cities, Miam-Dade, Broward (Ft. Lauderdale), Palm Beach, Tampa-St. Pete, Orlando and there are large tracts of the panhandle with no positive tests.

    It is updated 2x daily.

    Interestingly Miami-Dade has almost 500 positive tests, but so far zero deaths.

    Here’s the dashboard.

    https://experience.arcgis.com/experience/96dd742462124fa0b38ddedb9b25e429

  243. HA says:
    @vhrm

    “Knee-jerk virtue signaling in reaction to the earlier hype about supposed anti-Asian hate incidents?”

    Could be. The point is that before the Democrats were being drama queens about staying safe, they were being drama queens about let’s-go-hug-an-Asian and not be dissuaded by “rumours” about the virus. Same goes for the leftists in Spain and Italy, two of the hardest hit countries.

    • Agree: Dissident
  244. @anon

    ” There was an executive order that was intended ”

    How do you know what the intent was?

  245. @Jonathan Mason

    Very good piece here from an extremely intelligent below-the-line commentator in The Guardian, whom I have followed for a while. I believe the author is a motoring journalist.

    It’s not longer “amazing” but still interesting how many nominally “intelligent” people are locked in their lefty or liberal-establishment world and basically impervious to thought.

    This bit at least, i hope is spot on:

    I do actually wonder whether this crisis will mark the complete undoing of US Republicanism as we know it

    .

    What it should be is a rebuke of globalism, including the open-borders, cheap-labor grubbing in the GOP. Fingers crossed.

    he only way to truly fight the Coronavirus is with a nationalized, centrally-controlled, largely free-at-the-point-of-use health infrastructure.

    No. What’s required is a competent state. And it’s precisely the establishment that grotesquely failed.

    (I’ll also note that the current medical provision model is already–and becoming faster–obsolete. Bureaucratizing it so it involves several million iron rice bowls and is impervious to change–like the public schools–is not a long term winning strategy.)

    They’ll shut America out. They won’t want to travel to America, they won’t want American goods, they won’t want American visitors. …

    LOL. If only!

    This is of course utter nonsense–his fevered anti-American dream.

    But … i can hope! I’d love for us to be able to shut out “the world”. Even with our much crappier demographics than the 90% white nation i was born into, closing up now would still be way, way better than what’s coming. Our elites refuse but if the rest of the world wants to cut us off–great!

    Not going to happen though–unfortunately.

    … and the choice is between progressive (probably) Democrats offering the US what more quickly-recovered and more prosperous countries have, in the form of a state that actually cares about them,

    This is the heart of it. This bozo preens that his sort of people “actually care” about the people. And thinks “caring about the people” is demonstrated by checkbox welfare statism.

    If there’s anything that can be said about European leftists and European governments it is that they most certainly do not care about their people. (With a few heroic exceptions like the guy in Hungary.)

    In fairness there was a time–as late as 60 years ago maybe?–when European social democrats did maintain some “care about the working man” credibility. Social welfare and labor policy to give the working classes a fair shake.

    But eventually all the leftists caught the virus of Jewish minoritarianism from the United States. Their own working classes we’re … boring (and frankly reactionary). And European life was becoming prosaically … pleasant.

    Racial strife–like the US civil rights–was some much more exciting, and ergo virtuous to be involved in. So it was necessary to import lots of completely alien black and brown people so that they could have a race problem and be involved in “the struggle”, bathe in their righteousness and broadcast their virtue to everyone. And that is what they did and do.

    But nothing can actually be further from caring for the nation’s people. Rather it’s its antithesis.

  246. HA says:
    @AnotherDad

    “My guess–only a guess–is that these isolation procedures have driven the replication ratio below 1. But we’re not going to know until it starts petering out.”

    I agree, but if social distancing is having any effect on coronavirus, it should also be having an effect on other communicable diseases — colds, pink eye, whatever. There is presumably going to be a reduction in sales of Robitussin and the like (unless people start stockpiling that, too, thinking it’s full of quinine or whatever), and other such measurable parameters that, when put together, should give an independent measure of what social distancing does in terms of communicable diseases, and moreover, which countries that have only recently taken it up (i.e. white countries) are doing it better than others.

    I know there is the suspicion among some here that if the virus turns out to be a nothingburger in comparison with flu, that advocates of social distancing will just claim they saved the day like heroes, when in fact social distancing did nothing except allow for more vacuous virtue signalling. But that’s a cop-out. There are going to be measurable impacts on diseases quite removed from coronavirus, from herpes to strep throat.

  247. @Ron Unz

    Ron, a main problem with our–feminized–intellectual discourse in the West, people being denounced for saying reasonable, or just plain true, but unpopular things.

    I spar with Jack all the time over this ideology of Jewish minoritarianism and its catastrophic effect on the US and the larger West. But I don’t believe there is a single false word in his comment above. It’s just true.

    Epidemics generally do not devastate economies long term–and certainly not living standards. Labor prices soared after the Black Death–there’s solid documentation about this in terms of how much wheat a laborer could ask for a day’s work. Many people think the plague had a lot to do with the breakdown of serfdom in England. Peasants could just run off and work somewhere else–so landlords had to offer a better deal to keep ’em “down on the farm”.

    We can argue what the right approach is here.

    Personally i’d like to see less “shut it down” and more mask wearing. To me:
    — sick people stay home (no exceptions)
    — wear masks in public venues
    — wash hands and alcohol gel at entrance to all public facilities, shops, government, offices, etc.
    And we’ve got the replication rate < 1.
    But that's arguable. Maybe the lockdown is the way to go?

    But what Jack said it just quite reasonable factual analysis. You can quibble about how fast we'd recover and what the effects–winners, losers will be. But mocking it is silly and counter-productive.

  248. Kylie says:
    @Mr McKenna

    Thanks for asking. I’m sorry if my reply seemed terse. Politicians bring out the worst in me. Actually, I was flattered that you asked my opinion.

  249. @epebble

    That is a pretty weak analysis.

    Seriously epebble? You’re calling Jack’s analysis “weak” and you offer gems like this:

    More incalculable will be loss of confidence and morale. With a sudden loss of significant fraction of political leadership, we will end up with fractious populist/socialist governments that won’t know its hand from its ass

    Oh please. The US establishment is a disaster. The actually productive white populace–the people that see there’s electricity in your lines, gas at the pump, food on the shelves–have complete contempt for them. Wiping them out–guillotine or the plague–would be a complete win.

    As to the demographic issues you site–sure they are considerably worse–in terms of capability–than they were 50 years ago. (For which our “political leadership” that you backhandedly praise is responsible.) And we do have a problem that some of young white guys who are capable have steered away from STEM because of the Asian invasion. And “Eastern European!” supremacy … LOL. Since when?

  250. @AnotherDad

    Epidemics generally do not devastate economies long term–and certainly not living standards.

    I do want to clarify this, make clear the “generally”.

    The big exception is a plague to so weakens a nation that invaders can come and taken over. Think the Columbian Exchange plagues in the Americas. They were brought by the invaders and so devastated the indigenous population, that they couldn’t resist the invaders. But it’s the *invaders* that actually destroy your society, not the plague.

    If the Chinese virus really was an effective bio-weapon like that–whacking down a huge swathe of productive age people in the USA, but having only limited effect on the Chinese, then yeah … it would be a *huge* nation shattering deal. The Chinese could–in theory–roll in and take over. Although even that is debatable in the age of nukes. But in any case it would be huge.

    The Chinese virus is not that. It’s 10-50x as lethal as the flu, skewing very old. 99%+ of productive age people sail right on through this–probably half essentially asymptomatic, half with something between a cold and a severe flu, and only a few percent hospital cases of which 90% can be handled… while 10-15% of the elderly are killed off.

    It simply isn’t a “whacks the nation” type of deal.

    On the other hand official Western policy right now is to let the invaders in to replace us.

    So where is our real problem?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  251. Hail says: • Website
    @Jack D

    Thank you.

    The more I have read on this, the more I realize the “It’s Just The Flu” was, in simple terms, right all along. A 0.1% overall death rate of those exposed to the virus looks quite possible, despite the media hysteria-campaign.

    And if it is 0.2%, 0.3% final count, also possible when the smoke clears, what difference does that make? Occasionally flu season is bad, occasionally not bad, occasionally severe. So this is one of the latter, at worst. Take precautions for the vulnerable. We have always dealt with it in stride.

    (As for calculating that final number, the measurement problem is significant; besides calculating the total-infected when the huge majority show no symptoms and are not tested, what about [e.g.] the terminal cancer patient, age 85, who was given 3-6 months to live by a doctor in December 2019, who dies today, positive for “The Virus.” To what is his death attributed? A version of this is applicable to a very large portion of the deaths, likely a clear majority. This is a statistics fiasco as much as anything.)

  252. Hail says: • Website
    @Ron Unz

    My impression is that the 1% fatality rate is reasonably well-established based on the massive data from China and subsequently confirmed by other outbreaks

    The 1% rate is an absolutely upper bound that assumes every single ‘infected’ person was tested and confirmed.

    The problem is, we know that a very large majority of people show no symptoms, as is true for most viruses (which is how they stay in the system circulating in any case; Ebola’s great competitive disadvantage is that it hits too hard; the media is greatly responsible for promoting a simple flu virus and creating an Ebola-outbreak-like hysteria).

    There is just no way that even the most ambitious and comprehensive testing countries have caught everyone, especially given the policies of only testing those who are sick. The 1% figure is too high. The plausible true final count will be 1% divided by some number, arguably that number is something between 2 and 5 or perhaps even above 5. The true death rate is almost certainly closer to 0.1% than to 1.0%.

    The problem with death-count math in this media-driven hysteria is the serious data problem of maximizing the numerator (deaths) while severely deflating/undercounting the denominator (total infected, a figure we don’t know; the total-reported-infected is based on testing, bears an unclear but definitely-too-low relation to the true-infected).

  253. Hibernian says:
    @Corvinus

    “Fifty percent unemployed = ultra violent civil war”

    Fantasy Island has been off the air for nearly 4 decades.

    No sure if you’re denying that unemployment double the worst in the ’30s will lead to revolution or if you’re denying unemployment could get that high. If the Newsomes and Pritzkers of this world were to have their way, it certainly could. Fortunately I don’t think they’ll get their way outside their own states, which unfortunately are large and influential.

  254. @anon

    LOL! You anonymous posters are so funny!

    We probably have similar writing styles because we were influenced by the same authors in our adolescence.

    In another post somewhere here I did suggest that zinc might be beneficial.

    I’m not sure that I agree completely with the quoted author. He does not take into account how flexible the United States system is and has been overtaken by events.

    Not surprising, because how many of us really knew that there were trillions of dollars waiting in the wings to help out our health system in the case of a bad epidemic of flu and that they were already plans in place for a mass quarantine of the whole nation that would be paid for by the central government?

    And that the federal government had plans to support the entire retirement pension system by propping up the stock market? I don’t remember anything about that in the presidential debates between Trump and Hillary Clinton.

  255. @black sea

    He was a big boy who loved his mom, and you’d better not have stood in the way.

    She was a nice old lady who fortunately died before Harvey got into trouble. He checked on financial things, and I had to get her permission for whatever he wanted to do, because he was not a party to her accounts.

    That was okay. He actually shook my hand one time and recited the cliché, “It’s a pleasure doing business with you.” So I’ve got that going for me. This was twenty years ago, though.

    He had a strong presence, as you would expect. He seemed taller than me, even though I am taller. His hand was big and meaty when you shook it. Bright, he moved quickly to the next topic once he was satisfied with what he got from you.

    My girlfriend at the time had the real run-in with Harvey that colors my impression the most. She was the receptionist at a spa. One day Harvey’s mom was there and he dropped in looking for her. He was impatient and wanted to see Mom now! My girlfriend explained that she could go back and find Mom, but Harvey wouldn’t have it. He started walking down the hall and actually said, loudly, “I could buy this place! Where’s my Mom?!”

    There were women in various states of undress back there, getting massages, baths saunas and such, and Harvey was the proverbial bull in a china shop. My girlfriend chased after him but could not stop him.

    He loved Mom.

  256. Ron Unz says:
    @Hail

    There is just no way that even the most ambitious and comprehensive testing countries have caught everyone, especially given the policies of only testing those who are sick. The 1% figure is too high…The true death rate is almost certainly closer to 0.1% than to 1.0%.

    Well, what do I know? I’m just going by what the medical professionals seem to be saying. Also, I do regard the Chinese government as *very* competent, and I tend to doubt they would have shut down their entire economy and imposed a nationwide quarantine on 700M people if the death were about the same as “the flu.”

    Also, Greg Cochran has been following the issue pretty closely on his blog, and here are excerpted figures from Northern Italy that suggest the death rate is running 10x higher than last year. If deaths have increased by something like 1000%, I doubt your low figures are correct:

    https://westhunt.wordpress.com/2020/03/25/just-another-flu-in-bergamo/

  257. Ron Unz says:
    @AnotherDad

    But the key word above is “detected”. Just because the official cases are zooming up, doesn’t mean that actual infections are zooming up.

    Exactly. The reported infection data is generally pretty worthless since it entirely depends upon testing.

    You’re much better off using the lagged-implied-infection rate based on the current death-rate as I discussed in my piece yesterday:

    https://www.unz.com/runz/correctly-estimating-coronavirus-infections/

    For example, Florida officially only has 2,300 infections. But based upon the deaths, the true total is probably closer to 28,000. A big, big difference…

    • Replies: @Jonathan Mason
  258. Rapparee says:
    @The Wild Geese Howard

    Yeah, because we really want to flood the hospitals with a ton of simultaneous delirium tremens cases at this exact moment.

  259. Bill says:
    @Hail

    South Korea’s death rate is over 1%, and their testing program was and is very aggressive: they caught many asymptomatic and mildly symptomatic cases. The true rate (assuming excellent care) is probably less than 1% but not a lot less. The running totals people quote can be biased in either direction: for example down because the denominator is too high (the right denominator is cases 2 weeks ago) and up because the denominator is too low (the right denominator includes untested positives).

    The big problems for the “it’s the flu” brigade are the overloaded ICUs and massive excess mortality in the hotspots.

  260. @AnotherDad

    Labor prices soared after the Black Death–there’s solid documentation about this in terms of how much wheat a laborer could ask for a day’s work.

    The comparison between Coronavirus’s potential effects on the modern U.S. economy with plague’s effect on medieval England is too asinine to take seriously.

    Do you seriously believe the two societies—socially, economically, demographically, whatever—are similar enough to make this a sound argument?

    And how is a disease that mainly kills eighty-year-olds going to decimate the labor pool?

  261. @Ron Unz

    Florida has a high death rate anyway. People actually move to Florida to die here. Charlotte County in SW Florida has, I believe, or used to have, the oldest average age of any county in the US. It may have been overtaken by Sumter County.

    Senator Rick Scott’s Medicare fraud scams were centered at his Fawcett Memorial hospital in Charlotte County.

    Anyway we are trying to keep it under control. All restaurants and Disney are closed and Governor Ponce de Leon has ordered state troopers on I-95 to shoot out the tires of any gringo vehicles with NY plates.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  262. res says:
    @Hail

    There is just no way that even the most ambitious and comprehensive testing countries have caught everyone, especially given the policies of only testing those who are sick. The 1% figure is too high. The plausible true final count will be 1% divided by some number, arguably that number is something between 2 and 5 or perhaps even above 5. The true death rate is almost certainly closer to 0.1% than to 1.0%.

    An interesting country to look at is Iceland. They have been doing aggressive testing (of the population, not just symptomatic people), and looking at the cases by country normalized by population graphic at http://91-divoc.com/pages/covid-visualization/
    we see their case rate has been growing about 1.17x per day over the last three weeks (there was a very rapid increase from 2/29-3/4, I assume that was the testing ramp up after the first case). It is currently (3/25) at 2023 cases per million and was 233 per million on 3/11.

    Iceland has 364,260 people. Looking at the same graphic only for deaths (I’m not sure what the spike at day 0 is) we see a rate of 5.5 per million (so 2 deaths) up from 2.7 deaths per million (1 death) before 3/23.

    Now the question is how much lag to look at between the two graphs. In Ron’s post
    https://www.unz.com/runz/correctly-estimating-coronavirus-infections/
    he estimates:

    The typical mortality period (time between infection and death) – according to some estimates, around 3 weeks.

    But what we really care about for comparing those two curves to estimate the CFR is not the time from infection. It is the time from being included in the case count. I am interested in ideas on what number to use, but let’s just look at two: 1 week or 2 weeks.

    1 week ago the case rate was 683 per million. This would imply a CFR of 0.8%
    2 weeks ago the case rate was 233 per million. This would imply a CFR of 2.4%

    And this is for a country which has identified 50% of people with COVID-19 as being asymptomatic.

    These numbers make me think the 1% estimate might actually not be that far off (I have been skeptical it would hold up under more testing). But testing inaccuracy (false positives and negatives) make all of this complicated. Some Iceland discussion at https://cleantechnica.com/2020/03/21/iceland-is-doing-science-50-of-people-with-covid-19-not-showing-symptoms-50-have-very-moderate-cold-symptoms/

  263. HA says:
    @Louis Renault

    “They were about setting the stage for “worse is better”

    In that case, they did an awfully shoddy job of hiding their tracks. It’s worth remembering that the next time (i.e., any second now, from here till November) that the media wants to tell us that corona-vana-virus was more or less all Trump’s fault.

  264. @Hail

    All 3,500 passengers and crew on the Diamond Cruise were tested…..of the 715 positive , 40% had no symptoms, most had mild symptoms , 18% had serious symptoms and 8 have died, and it took an average of 25 days for the patients to die after being exposed to the virus.

    The fatality rate may be as low as .5% – but could be close to 1% based on what we observe in South Korea and The Diamond Princess cruise ship.

    If the fatality rate is .5% then the epidemic may end up killing more people than if the fatality rate was 1% because the hospitals will be overrun next week if the death rate is just .5%…. with a lower death rate we have significant more patients over the next 3 weeks , thus many will not receive treatment and ventilators will run out faster.

    With 1,000 Americans dying this week , and a death rate of .5% , we can calculate the number of Americans infected 4 weeks ago was 200,000 and the number infected today will be over 7 million Americans.

    A lower death rate results in more Americans being infected today , which implies a faster spread of the virus , resulting in a shortage of hospital beds next week.

    I suspect you are correct and the death rate is closer to .5% than 1% , which means we had 200,000 Americans infected by March 1st , thus we have over 7 million infected today , probably 12 million Americans infected if the number infected doubled every 5 days.

  265. @Hippopotamusdrome

    Yes the French had a great party over all that money they spent ‘civilizing’ North Africa. Made a happy movie about it called ‘The Battle of Algiers.’ And not to be outdone, those Parisains enjoyed their white guilt so much they did it again with the Battle of Dien Bien Phu.

    Heck, us Americans wanted in on the fun too. Now we’re having a party over all that business Nixon, Kissinger, the Bushes sent to China! And we get the same return the French got. Somehow the return on investment doesn’t go to the taxpayers…..

  266. Jmaie says:
    @Too Observant

    There is a science fiction short story, possibly in one of the Pournelle (your late friend) anthologies, that deals with a downturn in the economy.

    Could be you’re thinking of a Heinlein book (I can’t remember which one) where the government makes a monthly calculation of the gap between the citizenry”s spending power and the cost of all commercial output. This amount is then distributed evenly to all citizens which keeps commerce humming (and everyone employed).

    I’ve always wondered why that wouldn’t work. I guess we’re on the cusp of finding out.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  267. @Buzz Mohawk

    There were women in various states of undress back there, getting massages, baths saunas and such, and Harvey was the proverbial bull in a china shop. My girlfriend chased after him but could not stop him.

    But were the potted plants safe?

    My God man, priorities!

  268. Jmaie says:
    @Spud Boy

    And when it turns out to be a giant nothing burger, the Chicken Littles will say it was because we shut everything down for a month.

    Rather like how the favored (by which I mean unprovable) metric used during the aftermath of the 2008 housing crisis was “jobs created or saved.”

  269. @Buzz Mohawk

    Not sure that he loved his mother, or whether he was in love with trying to impress his mother with what a macher he was by trampling the goyim at whim. In other words, equating status with being a horrid human being.

    Providentially, when his self-perceived – and, no doubt, brutally maintained by whatever means necessary – “high status” was weighed in the pan against his actual behavior, he was found wanting by a jury of those whom he would never, ever consider to be his peers.

  270. dfordoom says: • Website
    @AnotherDad

    But the key word above is “detected”. Just because the official cases are zooming up, doesn’t mean that actual infections are zooming up.

    Agreed. The official cases are zooming up simply because they’re testing more people. But that’s something most people just cannot comprehend and it’s driving the current insane panic.

    • Replies: @vhrm
  271. dfordoom says: • Website
    @Hail

    The 1% figure is too high. The plausible true final count will be 1% divided by some number, arguably that number is something between 2 and 5 or perhaps even above 5. The true death rate is almost certainly closer to 0.1% than to 1.0%.

    Agreed. It may even turn out to be lower than 0.1%.

  272. Ron Unz says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    Florida has a high death rate anyway. People actually move to Florida to die here. Charlotte County in SW Florida has, I believe, or used to have, the oldest average age of any county in the US. It may have been overtaken by Sumter County.

    That’s a good point. So the average death rate in Florida may be quite a bit higher than 1%, in which case my estimated number of true infections would be lowered.

  273. Anonymous[389] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jmaie

    Could be you’re thinking of a Heinlein book (I can’t remember which one) where the government makes a monthly calculation of the gap between the citizenry”s spending power and the cost of all commercial output. This amount is then distributed evenly to all citizens which keeps commerce humming (and everyone employed).

    Book title was Beyond This Horizon. Heinlein shared in the attempt from about 1930 to 1950 to understand economics. For a while, it was possible to believe that economics actually had been understood, and that the brutal business cycle would be replaced by something a bit less brutal. Over the years, this attempt has degenerated into giving money to favored classes of people, and today nobody believes that economics is understood, although they do believe in bribery and raw force. Or, perhaps, they understand economics well enough to realize that one can’t consume what isn’t made, using tools that were never invented or even maintained, but are trying hard to pretend that one can.

  274. I’ve just looked on Denmark & Sweden data (opposite approaches). What I find puzzling is that so small percentage of people had either died or recovered. Over 97% are still sick.

    I don’t recall any flu or virus lasting so long….

    Furthermore: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8155405/Up-14-cent-recovered-coronavirus-patients-China-test-positive-doctors-reveal.html

    Up to 14 per cent of the recovered coronavirus patients in China test positive AGAIN, doctors reveal

    • Replies: @vhrm
  275. Anonymous[278] • Disclaimer says:
    @XYZ (no Mr.)

    Narcissism of small differences. Brits and (white) Americans have similar life expectancies, suffer from the same illnesses, are prone to the same unhealthy lifestyles, the same health fads and fashions. The two countries could swap healthcare systems and little would actually change.

  276. Thomas says:
    @Anonymous

    The bailout package is mostly to prevent the same sort of market issues they were worried about in 2008, banks and corporations holding toxic assets, liquidity and credit freezes, and so forth. That’s higher up the chain than unemployment.

  277. Anonymous[380] • Disclaimer says:
    @Ron Unz

    Almost everyone seems to claim that the death rate is normally around 1%

    Based on what assumptions and math?

  278. Almost everyone seems to claim that the death rate is normally around 1%

    Whatever the death rate is, it will vary according to the population that is hosting the virus.

  279. Anonymous[380] • Disclaimer says:
    @AnotherDad

    The Chinese virus is not that. It’s 10-50x as lethal as the flu

    10X at most.

  280. Almost everyone seems to claim that the death rate is normally around 1%

    Whatever the death rate is, it will vary according to the population that is hosting the virus.

    Even when I once worked in prison for men aged 18 to 24, you would have thought the death rate was potentially very low, or even zero, but there were a small number of inmates who were morbidly obese, had asthma, cancer, diabetes, HIV, cardiac pacemakers, organ transplants, and so on, and then there was the sepsis from jailhouse tattoos. You never really know what a population has until you dig down.

  281. sayless says:
    @The Alarmist

    Well, I’m locked up with my sick friend for the next twelve weeks minimum, so there’s that.

  282. black sea says:
    @Buzz Mohawk

    He [Weinsten] loved Mom.

    Gangstas always do.

    Thanks for the anecdote. Even before his metoo# troubles, I’d read that he was a pretty nasty piece of work, whom Hollywood people were afraid to not pretend to like. Courtney Love — pretty nasty herself — was one of the few to publicly make reference to his naughty habits before the dam broke.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @ScarletNumber
  283. Charon says:
    @Not my economy

    Perhaps not, but the 6 trillion is.

    Get it?

    • Thanks: The Wild Geese Howard
  284. @Jonathan Mason

    They’ll shut America out. They won’t want to travel to America, they won’t want American goods, they won’t want American visitors.

    This would all be a feature, not a bug; the F.U.S.A. is fortunate to be one of relatively few places capable of autarky with no trouble at all, with the possible exception of a few rare-earth metals, but those could be gotten as easily as not with a bit of cheating – someone would want food from our astounding ability to produce it, or perhaps even some of our fuel or finished goods.

    America with no (or, at least, very few) foreigners? I remember that; and I’m only just middle-aged. It was very heaven! An inability of Americans to visit other places? Who gives a shit except the pretentious? We can ski, surf, fish, hike, camp, boat. Enjoy any cuisine imaginable, and damned near any biome: from tropical forests in Puerto Rico and Hawaii to deserts, mountains, prairies, volcanoes, reefs, swamps, coniferous rainforests, beaches, tundra. Natural wonders? The Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Yosemite, the Smoky Mountains, the Everglades, Mt. McKinley, the Great Lakes, Niagara Falls…. Great works by man? The Statue of Liberty, Rushmore, Stone Mountain, the Gateway Arch, the Parthenon, Monticello, Balboa Park, the Smithsonian Museum, the Space Needle, the Salt Lake Temple, the Golden Gate Bridge.

    These are very brief lists of examples from infinite choices. Anyone capable of becoming bored by the options for travel and recreation within the F.U.S.A. is a boring person himself.

    (The remaining nonsense, about the results of Americans not traveling and not having others travel here leading to “toxic” results is all horseshit. The only people who would suffer would be the rentier scum and the executives of giant corporate disasters who’d no longer make millions or billions of dollars annually by the sweat of their employees. A lot of scum in the government would have to start working for a living too. Again: all features, not bugs.)

  285. LondonBob says:
    @Smithsonian_6

    Giving evidence in front of the Dutch Parliament, Jaap van Dissel, head of the Netherlands National Institute of Health, said: “The exponential growth of the outbreak has in all probability been brought to a halt,” with the infection only being passed on at a rate of one infected person to one other person.

    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/germany-and-the-netherlands-seem-to-fight-off-the-virus-better-than-most-heres-why-2020-03-25?reflink=mw_share_twitter

    • Replies: @Dennis Dale
  286. UK says:
    @Smithsonian_6

    Maybe testing is the reason it appears to be…

  287. Dennis Dale says: • Website
    @LondonBob

    They buried the lede, to protect the Alpinati:

    Another, more random, theory is that the first Germans to contract the virus caught it mixing with other nationalities while skiing, which suggested that they were fit and active, and perhaps less likely to succumb to the disease.

  288. Anonymous[176] • Disclaimer says:
    @black sea

    Courtney IS nasty, but nasty people are sometimes the only honest ones. Mickey Cohen, Al Goldstein, a few other people come to mind.

  289. @black sea

    As with Bill Cosby, Tina Fey and 30 Rock were ahead of the curve on Harvey Weinstein. This clip is from a 2012 episode.

  290. vhrm says:
    @Bardon Kaldian

    On the John Hopkins data the “recovered” series seems to be very sparse. I haven’t looked into the details but at this point i wouldn’t put too much stock in it.

    And the longer this goes there more the number of active cases vs confirmed cases will matter.
    In the UK it appears that 7 days after symptoms start you’re considering no longer infectious.

    (see graphic near bottom https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-51506729 )

    So the number of recovered only lags infected by something like 1.5 weeks. Will be increasingly relevant as new number of new cases flattens out.

    • Thanks: Bardon Kaldian
  291. vhrm says:
    @dfordoom

    Agreed. The official cases are zooming up simply because they’re testing more people. But that’s something most people just cannot comprehend and it’s driving the current insane panic.

    Maybe. Yes, the numbers are going up because of testing, but that doesn’t guarantee that the actual number of infections isn’t also going up.

    One thing that’s hopeful on that front though is that the seldomly reported % of tests that are positive doesn’t seem too high (like <20% and quite variable). Presumably if "everybody has it and we just don't know it yet" that number would be higher.. esp since the tests are generally of higher risk people.

  292. @Hail

    …the media is greatly responsible for promoting a simple flu virus and creating an Ebola-outbreak-like hysteria…

    The media would be happy to see half a million Americans die if it denied Trump the 2020 election.

  293. Dissident says:
    @RichardTaylor

    Do you think any of us will ever personally know someone who is made sick by this “pandemic”? I mean just one?

    I know several.

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