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A commenter provides an overview of the news:

Dear Steve,

What follows are the opinions of one observer — a non-clinician, at that — about the pandemic we’re experiencing, gleaned almost entirely from open-source material. This is a snapshot; people who are paying close attention will already know most of what I relate.

First, the bad news.
Epidemiological models have stayed in the news, particularly the one from Neil Ferguson at Imperial College London. A simpler interactive model by Gabriel Goh was linked by Tomas Pueyo in his widely-discussed Medium piece. Few of the key parameters are known with adequate precision, but the overall message remains about the same when they are varied: this pandemic is going to be bad. Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs. Older is worse, existing health problems are worse. In the U.S., the patchwork of state and local social-distancing measures halfheartedly endorsed by President Trump will not flatten the curve.
The sweep of the virus can be grasped through the work of John Burn-Murdoch at the Financial Times, Coronavirus tracked: the latest figures as the pandemic spreads. Not paywalled, and updated daily from Johns Hopkins data. Inspired by Burn-Murdoch, “Wade” keeps four interactive graphs updated at his backwards webpage 91-DIVOC. Find the region where you live, toggle between linear and logarithmic scales to see how it is faring compared to the hot-spots in the news. It’s sobering.

If you want to dig deep on models, one place to start is Phillipe Lemoine’s March 21 blog post, Are we headed toward an unprecedented public health disaster? Lemoine lives in Paris and focuses on likely future trends in France, but his lengthy analysis is applicable to most of the developed world, excepting only South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Japan, parts of Northern Europe (perhaps), and a few other places.

If you’re on the fence about masks in public: it diminishes the risk to others from the mask-wearer’s coughs and sneezes, it demonstrates social solidarity, and it may modestly protect the wearer. In that order. Practical tips from Stanford University’s Dept. of Anesthesia in a regularly-updated PDF: Addressing COVID-19 Face Mask Shortages (key tip: virus on re-usable masks is killed by 30 minutes in a 160 F oven). I found this via Matt Bell’s 3/23/20 article Masks work! Wear them! The same day, polymath psychiatrist Scott Alexander wrote the long-form post Face Masks: Much More Than You Wanted To Know.

An MD colleague is on the front line, caring for patients in a big-city hospital’s Intensive Care Unit. He offers a measured dissent: “Masks don’t need to be worn [by people who] are not in routine contact with sick (or potentially sick people). SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks). Masks should be conserved for healthcare providers… continue to practice social distancing and hand washing.”

And on to some good news.
* Testing capacity continues to expand. In particular, Abbott has launched a 15-minutes-for-an-answer molecular diagnostic on its popular ID Now point-of-care platform (18,000 installed units in the U.S., 50,000 kits a day by April 1, says Bloomberg News). Kits are shipping (or will soon ship) for high-capacity automated systems by Hologic, Roche, Abbott, Cepheid, and others. These machines form the backbone of the testing infrastructure of public-health, hospital, and private clinical laboratories, worldwide.
* Antibody tests are now the missing link. These are different, using blood rather than a throat swab. They reveal if you have been infected, and whether or not you have developed immunity to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Judging from other members of the coronavirus family, immunity is unlikely to be complete and permanent — but that’s a problem for another day. Reuters covers recent developments in this 3/25/20 article, U.S. companies, labs rush to produce blood test for coronavirus immunity, and distributor Henry Schein Inc. announced the availability of hundreds of thousands of point-of-care tests, starting Monday. Perhaps with these tools, the epic fail in the U.S. and most of Europe on contact tracing can be belatedly reversed.
* I remain skeptical that a vaccine to SARS-CoV-2 can be brought to the clinic in the next two years: side effects are going to be a major concern. Virologist Peter Kolchinsky knows much more than me, his March 23rd piece in City Journal is much more optimistic: A Cure for the Common Misconception: Covid-19 vaccines are possible, but we need a public-health mindset to make the most of them.
* Lastly, and … possibly … most significantly, Didier Raoult’s team at IHU – Méditerranée Infection in Marseilles has updated their experience with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin. Last night, they posted a preprint of the paper by Phillippe Gautret et al. “Clinical and microbiological effect of a combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin in 80 COVID-19 patients with at least a six-day follow up: an observational study” is available for download as a PDF from this page at the hospital’s website. Like their March 17th report of their first six patients treated with this combination therapy (now published), this one is a rush job.
This report is on IHU’s treatment of 80 Covid-19 patients (the prior 6, and 74 additional). On admission, the NEWS illness severity scores were Low for 69, Medium for 4, and High for 2.. As with the earlier manuscript, there’s a frustrating lack of detail on the clinical course of these patients that should have been in the Supplemental Information. Yet Raoult’s top-line claims are clear:
* Hydroxychloroquine/azithromycin therapy lowers viral load rapidly. Figure 1:
* When infectious virus particles rather than viral RNA are measured, the drop is even more dramatic. If substantiated, this means that after 5 days of hchlor/az therapy, patients are much less contagious. (This is new: to my knowledge, Raoult is the only one routinely performing the cumbersome assay of infectious viruses on clinical samples in a study like this.)
* More patients on hchlor/az recover, and they can be discharged faster. Few need to advance from general-ward beds to ICU beds and ventilator support. From Table 3: at publication, 65 had been discharged, 14 remained hospitalized, and 1 died. 3 had been transferred to the ICU, where 1 remained.
* Hchlor/az is unhelpful (or marginally helpful) for critically ill patients.
So these are the wondrous results of an uncontrolled trial, incompletely presented in a non-peer-reviewed preprint by a group that is the foremost champion of that particular strategy. By themselves, they cannot be persuasive. My ICU connection has first-hand experience with administering this combination, and he isn’t convinced by this paper.
In the press, Raoult has been praised and savaged in equal measure. Yesterday, City Journal essayist Theodore Dalrymple profiled the “highly distinguished, if eccentric, microbiologist who touts a treatment for Covid-19,” A Time For Gurus. For a less generous take in Science magazine, see Charles Piller’s article of the day before, ‘This is insane!’ Many scientists lament Trump’s embrace of risky malaria drugs for coronavirus.
So… it comes down to this question: will independent investigators confirm Dr. Raoult’s findings, or will they wither under scrutiny by disinterested parties? A trickle of answers should start coming over next week or so, in the form of early results from ongoing trials, including a massive, scattershot observational trial in New York.
My own intuition is that Raoult is onto something very important, the most promising development at an otherwise grim moment. If most sick people can be kept from needing ventilators — if health care workers can be protected from the virus — then the entire picture would change drastically, and much for the better. Is this opinion influenced by hope? It is.
I will close with a few more chits in the Good News department: some other therapies seem to be showing promise in early reports, such as remdesivir, the anti-arthritic Tolicizumab, and plasma transfusions from people who have beaten the virus.
Stay safe.
 
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  1. And in more bad news, it turns out that a ventilator might not do that much good.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-intensive-care-uk-patients-50-per-cent-survival-rate

    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    Yes. This is true in other diseases as well. I came across a research paper once that concluded mortality in ARDS patients was related to severity of underlying disease, not the ARDS. I.e., if you have an infection and they can't treat it, a ventilator will only do so much good.
    , @Wilkey
    Well at least that solves the ventilator shortage. 🙁
    , @anon
    So in other words, when Cuomo begs for another 10,000 ventilators, he might as well order 5,000 caskets.
    , @Ed
    Fifty percent survival rate for a ventilator patient with a respiratory ailment is normal.
    , @Anonymous
    A ventilator is always a supportive measure; it cures nothing, it simply buys time for treatment/ patient's own body to effectively respond to whatever insult caused the patient to be put on the ventilator in the first place. A ventilator is just a pair of crutches for your lungs.
    , @Negrolphin Pool
    I read 86 percent of ventilated patients in New Orleans were succumbing along with 70 percent throughout Sweden. I wonder what the mortality rate is for those for whom placement on a ventilator is indicated but not provided.
  2. Some more fascinating mathematical modelling of mitigation strategies.

    TLDW: stay home and wash your hands.

    • Thanks: Coemgen
    • Replies: @Coemgen
    Should be understandable by the general public.

    Of course, travel restrictions are downplayed and there's some harping on testing--enough that anti-Trumpers will feel themselves vindicated.

    Well, it's too late to use global travel restrictions to stop the spread. So, we're looking at intra-national travel restrictions instead. I saw, on local (Boston area) news last night, some Cape Cod residents lamenting an early influx of New Yorkers to the Cape this year (implication was New Yorkers with their "foreign load").
  3. Now that we have 100+K infected and over 2000 dead, is it difficult to recruit a large enough cohort, like 1000 patients, in NYC and test the H+A therapy on a semi-scientific scale? It only seems to take a few days. If there is no statistically significant improvement in a few days, the test can be discontinued. Looks like Governor Cuomo is an enthusiast. He mentioned the therapy in today’s briefing.

  4. it demonstrates social solidarity

    Yes I’ll get right on that — showing solidarity with a society that hates me and wants me dead.

  5. Masks don’t need to be worn [by people who] are not in routine contact with sick (or potentially sick people). SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks). Masks should be conserved for healthcare providers

    Masks are really magical. When worn by healthcare providers they provide protection to them, but when you wear one, it does nothing, nothing I tell you. They are similar to guns, which only provide protection when worn by officers of the state. Also global warming – when Al Gore flies in his private jet, none is produced but your miserable coach seat creates it. We live surrounded by magic, we are just too blind to see it.

    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    And don't forget magic dirt too!
    , @Louis Renault
    So are Michael Bloomberg's bodyguards social distancing by staying at home or are they "essential workers?"
    , @Coemgen
    My apologies, I meant to click Agree!

    My hands are a bit shaky. I've been drinking coffee all day with no EtOH to counteract the caffeine.
    , @Alexander Turok
    Reminds me of how the army recommends bullet-proof vests for soldiers but doesn't recommend them for ordinary people.
    , @S Dash
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0195670113000698

    I read through the above article. It tried out 7 types of surgical masks and found that in a particular experiment (live influenza virus was sprayed towards the mask from 70mm distance so just over two feet), the concentration of live influenza virus from outside the mask was cut down by a factor of 1.3-50 depending on the type of mask. A single strap surgical mask had 1.3 factor reduction, all double strap surgical masks had at least a factor 2 reduction or so (factor 2 reduction, then factor 8 reduction, then factor 10 and so on), and one special mask had a factor 50 reduction.

    In other words, masks work!

    Even a simple, close fitting surgical mask should reduce risk dramatically, assuming

    a) you wear it whenever you are in crowds,
    b) after you take it off, you immediately wash your hands
    c) you dont wear it right away again or leave it in the sun before wearing it again.

    I downloaded the pdf file, and will be happy to email it to anyone who wants to have a look.

    , @AnotherDad
    Agree Jack.

    The continual lying is annoying.

    Look, there is no doubt, that the big benefit from masks is to cut down transmission--droplets--*from* sick people, nor that health care workers--who are in contact with sick people--need them much much much more than other citizens.

    But ... i don't want to be dutifully practicing my "social distancing" but then when i'm out picking up essential supplies--Diet Mtn Dew and "Cantina Style" chips--in the snack aisle at my local Walmart, turn around and suck in some air--and droplets with the Chinese virus--that some doofus just coughed out.


    The "save 'em for the health care workers" mask shortage, just reinforces what an epic fail our government "public health" bureaucracy is. They had time to give us deplorables lectures that quarantines don't work and warn us on the perils of "racism!" but no time to figure out they need a stockpile of masks and other medical supplies and a reliable domestic supply chain.

    Perhaps we should fire every last one of those people, and legally mandate that they can not wear masks--ever.
  6. I would like to see a racial,gender and age graph of the death toll….I’m guessing for once it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!

    • Replies: @UK
    The Atlantic had an article that posited that while men were much more likely to die, "feminism" (yes, not even women) was the real victim of this pandemic.
    , @Hippopotamusdrome


    for once it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!

     

    Not hard at all.


    [.forbes.com]
    The Economic Impact Of COVID-19 Will Hit Minorities The Hardest

     

    , @Anonymous

    it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!
     
    The raw figures will almost certainly show worse outcomes in African American patients, and possibly also in Hispanics.

    African Americans have a higher load of comorbidities, including much higher rates of diabetes than Caucasians.

    Hispanics also show considerably elevated rates of diabetes but despite this show considerable longevity.
    , @S. Anonyia
    Men are 70 percent of ICU cases. Obesity and even being overweight increases risk greatly, too.

    Racial stats for deaths (around here) kind of reflect obesity stats by race....blacks hit hardest.
  7. @Smithsonian_6
    And in more bad news, it turns out that a ventilator might not do that much good.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-intensive-care-uk-patients-50-per-cent-survival-rate

    Yes. This is true in other diseases as well. I came across a research paper once that concluded mortality in ARDS patients was related to severity of underlying disease, not the ARDS. I.e., if you have an infection and they can’t treat it, a ventilator will only do so much good.

  8. @Jack D

    Masks don’t need to be worn [by people who] are not in routine contact with sick (or potentially sick people). SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks). Masks should be conserved for healthcare providers
     
    Masks are really magical. When worn by healthcare providers they provide protection to them, but when you wear one, it does nothing, nothing I tell you. They are similar to guns, which only provide protection when worn by officers of the state. Also global warming - when Al Gore flies in his private jet, none is produced but your miserable coach seat creates it. We live surrounded by magic, we are just too blind to see it.

    And don’t forget magic dirt too!

  9. As with the earlier manuscript, there’s a frustrating lack of detail

    Hydroxychloroquine/azithromycin therapy lowers viral load rapidly. Figure 1:

    If a vaccine is more than a year away, then this combination of already approved drugs is the only game in town to fight WUHAN-19. Both drugs are known to interfere with other types of viruses, so doctors will be willing to try it. Both are very inexpensive generics, so it will not be prohibitively expensive.

    It will be a huge win if the combo can knock the WUHAN-19 virus down enough to significantly reduce the need for hospital admissions. Lowering the “% needing advance care” (a.k.a. “Cutting the Top off the Curve”) generates similar benefits to “Flattening the Curve”.
    _____

    Two critical questions:

    -1- Is there any news on ramping up production and distribution?

    -2- How common are allergies and/or drug interactions that could prevent this combination from being administered?

    PEACE 😷

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard

    -1- Is there any news on ramping up production and distribution?

     

    Yes:

    Industry ups chloroquine production, donates millions of doses

    https://www.in-pharmatechnologist.com/Article/2020/03/23/Industry-ups-chloroquine-production
    , @Harry Baldwin
    What concerns me is the political opposition to the use of hydroxochloroquine. Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer has threatened to revoke the medical licenses of doctors who prescribe it. Is this just TDS in action?
    , @Anon
    Do not support the proposed vaccines for COVID-19 as they contain recycled fetal tissue. Please read the article below for additional information on this evil atrocity.

    Does Moderna’s Heavily Promoted COVID-19 Vaccine Use Aborted Human Fetal Cell Lines?

    "Unfortunately, Moderna, the company that has been recently touted in news headlines for its developing mRNA-1273 vaccine to fight the virus, uses aborted fetal cell lines.

    Debi Vinnedge, Executive Director of Children of God for Life, a prolife organization whose mission is to end the use of aborted fetal material in vaccines and medicines, said her suspicions were raised after checking Moderna’s patents and in particular, the use of the Spike (S) protein.

    The idea behind using this Spike protein in a vaccine with messenger RNA (mRNA) is to teach the patient’s immune system to produce its own protein antibodies to block and destroy the virus so the person will not become infected. Unfortunately, Vinnedge said her heart sank when she discovered that Spike protein was produced using HEK 293 aborted fetal cells.

    “It was detailed in several science publications”, she said. “And in light of the public fear and panic, I did not want to be the bearer of bad news.” Vinnedge said the heavy burden of revealing that knowledge made her dig further into others’ research. That’s when she found another well- known pharmaceutical company had a better solution.

    Enter, Sanofi Pasteur which is using its own recombinant DNA platform to produce a Covid-19 vaccine. According to the Department of HHS Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) reports, Sanofi is using the DNA of the baculovirus expression platform, which is also used in their licensed Flublok Quadrivalent vaccine.

    …Vinnedge said she was particularly annoyed to see a recent article in the Washington Post trying to assert that President Trump’s ban on the use of aborted fetal tissue was blocking important research and treatments for Covid-19 virus.

    “That accusation is laughable at best and nothing more than a political maneuver,” stated Vinnedge. “In fact, we have morally produced treatments for patients who are already infected, notably Hydroxychloroquine or Plaquenil. And there are more promising treatments on the way to prevent infection entirely.”

    https://christiansfortruth.com/does-a-new-highly-anticipated-covid-19-vaccine-use-aborted-human-fetal-cell-lines/
     

  10. You might wanna focus on the real news, Steve: “gender economist”(!) Katica Roy says corona’s about to destroy the world, with women hit hardest.

    https://www.nbcnews.com/know-your-value/feature/gender-economist-katica-roy-if-we-don-t-act-fast-ncna1166771

  11. “this pandemic is going to be bad. Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs.”

    Please correct me if I am wrong. Based on the NYC experience https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-daily-data-summary-deaths.pdf

    From the NYC experience there are 517 deaths attributed to coronavirus. 425 deaths are said to have had underlying conditions while and additional 78 deaths are characterized as underlying conditions pending.

    If the data is considered pristine then a minimum of 425/517 =82% of deaths had underlying conditions. A maximum of (425+78)/517 = 97% of deaths had underlying conditions.

    65 and older were 369 / 517 = 70% of deaths but I think it might turn out that age is not the best predictor as age correlates with serious underlying conditions.

    What’s the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female?

    The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?

    Does the lockdown strategy make sense for young people and even all people without underlying conditions?

    • Agree: Je Suis Omar Mateen
    • Replies: @Wilkey

    What’s the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female? The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?
     
    Because they get it, then spread it to people with underlying conditions. Welcome back from your two month coma. Hell, welcome to life post-1847. Ignaz Semmelweis sends his regards.
    , @MikeatMikedotMike
    "The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down? "


    Because shut up, they explained.
    , @Thea
    Because they may be related to ones with higher risk. husbands, parents, disabled children.

    I was hoping this would be an awakening for lonely feminists. Being stuck inside all day alone with a roommate must really suck. Maybe a return to young marriages?
  12. I haven’t followed the Hchlor/az info much. Hosever, I know they have been using Hchlor in Asia (Thailand, China, South Korea…) since at least early February. I can’t believe there isn’t data on its usefulness already.

    Also, in some places they are putting zinc in their cocktail. Zinc is supposed to interfere with virus replication inside the cell. Hchlor acts as an ionophore to help zinc get into cells. Some green tea compounds can also act as zinc ionophores. If you get sick, zinc and green tea aren’t going to hurt.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard

    I haven’t followed the Hchlor/az info much. Hosever, I know they have been using Hchlor in Asia (Thailand, China, South Korea…) since at least early February. I can’t believe there isn’t data on its usefulness already.
     
    There are some reports but the medical experts here have repeatedly assured us those are nothingburgers.
  13. “Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs.”

    And this inflammatory statement is scientifically accurate, or an opinion? Sounds akin to the late ’80’s dire apocalyptic predictions that “Every other human will be infected with HIV by the year 2000.” Did that occur? Of course not. Theoretically, millions of people are potentially in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs with pneumonia, the common flu, the common cold, etc. every single year. The same cohorts, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems are also at risk from these viruses as well. And yet, do millions upon millions pass from pneumonia or the flu? Or even SAARS or Bird Flu? Do they? Still, the mortality rate, both worldwide and in the US, hasn’t appeared to move above 1-3%. Technically, if millions upon millions are infected, then millions could pass, but that’s not the way the sentence is phrased. In other words, about 97% that are infected with COVID-19 will recover and not die. How good their immune systems are could pay a key factor in their recovery.

    Notice, that the direct relative threat from COVID-19 to China has largely disappeared, and that China, from whence the virus originated, has now gotten the virus under control within their borders. It took about three months to do so and obviously their response to the threat to their nation was on the whole quicker than the US response has been to their own threat. Obviously the Chinese are probably so relieved at this point. After a short while, China can go back to eating their exotic meats, like bat, from their wet markets, give or take a few months out. Hopefully that won’t start the thing all over again and at a much faster pace.

    • Replies: @Mr McKenna

    After a short while, China can go back to eating their exotic meats, like bat, from their wet markets, give or take a few months out. Hopefully that won’t start the thing all over again and at a much faster pace.
     
    Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I can see no reason why the Chinese can't do this all over again next year, or whenever it happens. They aren't changing their habits one iota, and they won't until and unless we 1) stop buying their crap and 2) stop permitting them entry to our countries. How likely is either, really?

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8163761/Chinese-markets-selling-bats.html

    As exposés go, that one's fairly tame. It doesn't show animals crammed into cages so tightly that some asphyxiate, nor does it show them being slaughtered right next to the cages. Both are normal practice. Note: this is current intelligence, right in the middle of the pandemic, just from another city.

    By tying up our economy (not to mention our society) with a place like China, we've made a bargain with the Devil. I think we've just begun to experience the results.

    , @Spud Boy
    I'd like to understand how the cases in China got to 80K and then just stopped. Presumably people from Wuhan travelled throughout China before the lock down, so shouldn't other cities in China have experienced NY City-type numbers? Or did China simply stop reporting new cases?
  14. @Smithsonian_6
    And in more bad news, it turns out that a ventilator might not do that much good.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-intensive-care-uk-patients-50-per-cent-survival-rate

    Well at least that solves the ventilator shortage. 🙁

    • Replies: @Ed
    Half survive though so it really doesn’t. Also covid patients stay on vents longer so the virus will exasperate existing shortages.
  15. In the UK, police are harassing dog walkers who drive into the country to walk their dogs, and stopping motorists to ask if their journey is really necessary.

    Meanwhile, here’s 6 hours inbound traffic to Heathrow. Shanghai, Beijing, HK, Lagos, Doha, etc etc

    https://www.airport-london-heathrow.com/lhr-arrivals?tp=12

    All other airports also open, plus the Channel Tunnel.

    I wonder how many police are stopping people at the arrivals gates?

    Anarcho-tyranny.

    • Agree: Lot
    • Replies: @Yojimbo/Zatoichi
    Preventing them from UK entry would be racist and zenophobic, and that's not who the Brits are.
    , @Anonymous
    Same in the US - in the midst of S Korean and Italian outbreaks, US did nothing to limit inbound flights from these countries.
  16. It’s somewhat laughable at this stage of the game that people are still approaching this as an Apollo type of problem-solving event. It’s akin to starting the football season with the USC cheerleading squad as your offense and trying to make 1st quarter adjustments. It doesn’t really matter if you send Chrissy up the middle or pitch her a lateral toss – she is still going to get her collar bone broken by a charging linebacker.

    The virus is already out there. It will continue to kill people. We will never know which measures worked and which ones did not, because the data is too sparse and poorly collected. Even if a reliable “answer” could be determined, it will already be too late.

    Unless a “return to normalcy” takes place immediately, the economic, social and political consequences of the shutdown will dwarf any public health concern. And unlike the virus, no one will be spared those effects. The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return.

    • Replies: @Ron Mexico
    I get the analogy, but if I were a linebacker I certainly wouldn't drive through the SC song girl, but instead take my time bringing her down to the ground. And maybe, as an added bonus, some of her teammates would try to engage in blocking for her.
    , @Lot
    Agree.

    Here’s what I said to Greg Cochran, who’s on team #ShutItDown

    Greg, you combine:

    an unwarranted optimism about a self-induced depression more severe than the Great Depression (40% decline versus Q4 2019?, 30% drop in the stock market, unemployment more than doubling in less than a month)

    an unwarranted optimism that stay at home orders will be complied with and work

    an unwarranted optimism that the virus won’t still keep spreading or re-emerge because of asymptomatic carriers

    an unwarranted pessimism about the damage CV causes people under 70 without major comorbidities.

    On point 1, currently a number of industries are completely shut down. Zero revenue, continued expenses. They will default on their rent, fire their employees, overwhelm our courts with bankruptcy and debt cases. The shock of the housing bubble collapse caused a deep and long worldwide recession, but was tiny in comparison.

    On point three and four, all we really have is the word of the Chinese government on the effectiveness of extreme shutdowns.

    The Italian shutdown doesn’t seem to have done much. Ohio shut down schools and businesses sooner than its neighbors but has CV rates comparable to them. No mass deaths in Iran despite very weak compliance with shutdown orders.

    I think the shutdown measures so far in the US were warranted based on what we knew in early to mid March. The case for extending them for months is not convincing, and the burden is on those who want WWII mobilization level expansion of government size and power, not the skeptics.

    I think CV will be really awful. I criticized Trump back in January for not stopping all Chinese flights. I dumped most of my stocks in February. But at this point CV is looking like it is not “just the flu” but “just the flu” x 10. That’s not grounds to induce another Great Depression. And it is far from clear even doing that will substantially reduce total mortality.

    , @Kratoklastes

    It doesn’t really matter if you send Chrissy up the middle or pitch her a lateral toss
     
    Of course it doesn't matter: Chrissy's ground game has been hopeless her knee injury - she's only useful as an additional blocker (because of her size).

    Britney's the go-to if Dakota is getting good protection from the offensive line, but the right girl to send up the middle is "Other-Britney" (Brittany).
  17. @George
    "this pandemic is going to be bad. Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs."

    Please correct me if I am wrong. Based on the NYC experience https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-daily-data-summary-deaths.pdf

    From the NYC experience there are 517 deaths attributed to coronavirus. 425 deaths are said to have had underlying conditions while and additional 78 deaths are characterized as underlying conditions pending.

    If the data is considered pristine then a minimum of 425/517 =82% of deaths had underlying conditions. A maximum of (425+78)/517 = 97% of deaths had underlying conditions.

    65 and older were 369 / 517 = 70% of deaths but I think it might turn out that age is not the best predictor as age correlates with serious underlying conditions.

    What's the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female?

    The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?

    Does the lockdown strategy make sense for young people and even all people without underlying conditions?

    What’s the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female? The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?

    Because they get it, then spread it to people with underlying conditions. Welcome back from your two month coma. Hell, welcome to life post-1847. Ignaz Semmelweis sends his regards.

    • LOL: Thomas
    • Replies: @theMann
    Well OBVIOUSLY it makes much more sense to lock down the 97 % of people who will never be at serious threat from the current corona virus mutation, then trying to isolate the 3% of people who might actually be at risk. Not to mention that when you have a "lockdown", but almost everyone still passes through grocery stores, elevators, gas stations, trucking depots, pharmacies, and every other "necessary" business, it aint much of a lockdown. AND, not to mention that prisons and jails, which literally are already on lockdown, are releasing their prisoners to protect them from infection, which of course makes perfect sense.


    Here are the facts, fearmongers:

    1. Most people will never get an active Covid-19 infection.
    2. Most people who do, will have a mild reaction.
    3. Most of the people who do have a severe reaction can already be treated with effective, known means.


    And the Big Enchilada:

    4. Summer comes, the virus goes away. Meanwhile, the worldwide, coordinated, massive increase in Police State measures remain. And that will kill 1000 times as many people as any virus.
    , @Neil Templeton
    The alternate policy is that folk with underlying conditions quarantine, and the younger folk keep the motor running. It is a rational response. Perhaps not as functional as your policy, you are welcome to support your case.
    , @JimDandy
    So lock down "people with underlying condition" and the oldies. Lock 'em down, hard core. And loosen restrictions on everyone else. How is that more extreme than what we are already doing? How is that worse for the economy?
  18. anon[416] • Disclaimer says:

    Latest petri dish:
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/four-dead-138-sick-on-holland-america-s-ms-zaandam-cruise-in-limbo-amid-coronavirus-crisis/ar-BB11Oc2j?ocid=msedgntp

    Cruise ship left Argentina on March 7, has not made a port in over a week, currently off the coast of Panama. So unlike the Yokohama Princess, nobody has been taken off the ship to a hospital. The only medical care is “ship’s doctor”, i.e. isolation. Obviously no ICU of any sort.

    1243 passengers and 586 crew.
    138 sick (53 passengers, 85 crew)’
    4 dead.

    US CDC should be down there yesterday working with Panama’s dept. of health to gather data.

    • Replies: @Art Deco
    On the Diamond Princess, just north of 11% of the passengers had a symptomatic illness. I see the same proportion there.
  19. @Jack D

    Masks don’t need to be worn [by people who] are not in routine contact with sick (or potentially sick people). SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks). Masks should be conserved for healthcare providers
     
    Masks are really magical. When worn by healthcare providers they provide protection to them, but when you wear one, it does nothing, nothing I tell you. They are similar to guns, which only provide protection when worn by officers of the state. Also global warming - when Al Gore flies in his private jet, none is produced but your miserable coach seat creates it. We live surrounded by magic, we are just too blind to see it.

    So are Michael Bloomberg’s bodyguards social distancing by staying at home or are they “essential workers?”

  20. Interesting article on how deaths are counted and how deadly it is.

    https://spectator.us/deadly-coronavirus-still-far-clear-covid-19/

    • Thanks: AnotherDad
  21. More proof that China owns the WHO:

    • LOL: JohnnyWalker123
  22. Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs.

    Aren’t we all? I was kind of hoping to see the ending from Climate Change, however.

  23. anon[559] • Disclaimer says:

    * Hchlor/az is unhelpful (or marginally helpful) for critically ill patients.

    Plaquenil which has weak ACE2 blockade doesn’t appear to be a savior of any kind in our patient population. Theoretically, it may have some prophylactic properties but so far it is difficult to see the benefit to our hospitalized patients, but we are using it and the studies will tell. With Plaquenil’s potential QT prolongation and liver toxic effects (both particularly problematic in covid 19 patients), I am not longer selectively prescribing this medication as I stated on a previous post.

  24. @A123

    As with the earlier manuscript, there’s a frustrating lack of detail
    ...
    Hydroxychloroquine/azithromycin therapy lowers viral load rapidly. Figure 1:
     
    If a vaccine is more than a year away, then this combination of already approved drugs is the only game in town to fight WUHAN-19. Both drugs are known to interfere with other types of viruses, so doctors will be willing to try it. Both are very inexpensive generics, so it will not be prohibitively expensive.

    It will be a huge win if the combo can knock the WUHAN-19 virus down enough to significantly reduce the need for hospital admissions. Lowering the "% needing advance care" (a.k.a. "Cutting the Top off the Curve") generates similar benefits to "Flattening the Curve".
    _____

    Two critical questions:

    -1- Is there any news on ramping up production and distribution?

    -2- How common are allergies and/or drug interactions that could prevent this combination from being administered?

    PEACE 😷

    -1- Is there any news on ramping up production and distribution?

    Yes:

    Industry ups chloroquine production, donates millions of doses

    https://www.in-pharmatechnologist.com/Article/2020/03/23/Industry-ups-chloroquine-production

  25. @Smithsonian_6
    And in more bad news, it turns out that a ventilator might not do that much good.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-intensive-care-uk-patients-50-per-cent-survival-rate

    So in other words, when Cuomo begs for another 10,000 ventilators, he might as well order 5,000 caskets.

  26. @Chrisnonymous
    I haven't followed the Hchlor/az info much. Hosever, I know they have been using Hchlor in Asia (Thailand, China, South Korea...) since at least early February. I can't believe there isn't data on its usefulness already.

    Also, in some places they are putting zinc in their cocktail. Zinc is supposed to interfere with virus replication inside the cell. Hchlor acts as an ionophore to help zinc get into cells. Some green tea compounds can also act as zinc ionophores. If you get sick, zinc and green tea aren't going to hurt.

    I haven’t followed the Hchlor/az info much. Hosever, I know they have been using Hchlor in Asia (Thailand, China, South Korea…) since at least early February. I can’t believe there isn’t data on its usefulness already.

    There are some reports but the medical experts here have repeatedly assured us those are nothingburgers.

  27. @anon
    Latest petri dish:
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/four-dead-138-sick-on-holland-america-s-ms-zaandam-cruise-in-limbo-amid-coronavirus-crisis/ar-BB11Oc2j?ocid=msedgntp

    Cruise ship left Argentina on March 7, has not made a port in over a week, currently off the coast of Panama. So unlike the Yokohama Princess, nobody has been taken off the ship to a hospital. The only medical care is "ship's doctor", i.e. isolation. Obviously no ICU of any sort.

    1243 passengers and 586 crew.
    138 sick (53 passengers, 85 crew)'
    4 dead.


    US CDC should be down there yesterday working with Panama's dept. of health to gather data.

    On the Diamond Princess, just north of 11% of the passengers had a symptomatic illness. I see the same proportion there.

  28. Honestly, given the exponential function at the base of the spread of the virus, it makes little sense to make projections until we can get a real grasp of the basic variables, including, most importantly, the effect of various kinds of measures on the exponent, R0, driving the function.

    This must be at base a classic differential system, in which the stability and outcome of the process depends on variables that may be manipulated in a roughly linear fashion, but which affect results exponentially. If the original value of R0 is 3.0, then if we can reduce the number of communication events by a factor of 33%, then the numbers will stop growing. Anything under 33%, and they will reduce.

    Obviously, we don’t know yet what the current measures have effected. There’s some significant delay between the time at which measures have been introduced and the time in which they are reflected in numbers of concern, such as #of cases and # of deaths. I’ve never been clear on how long that delay might need to be.

    I’d guess that within a week we might have a much better informed picture.

    Obviously too we don’t have a good sense of how changing weather might affect things.

    In many ways, discussing what we should do is quite premature until we have a sense of these things, precisely because of the vastly different outcomes not terribly different values of the input parameters might produce. Why even speculate until we have a handle on these things? Neither hysteria nor indifference makes a particle of sense at this point.

    We need cool heads most of all — they are in much shorter supply, it seems, than ventilators. We need to wait until we see the whites of the enemies eyes.

    • Replies: @Negrolphin Pool

    This must be at base a classic differential system, in which the stability and outcome of the process depends on variables that may be manipulated in a roughly linear fashion, but which affect results exponentially.
     
    You’re right. I wasn’t clear on this because you can crudely model the beginning stages of transmission by putting R0 in the base and time in the exponent where total infections I = R0^t. But the SIR model, Susceptible Infectious Recovered, which is itself simplistic, is, as you say, expressed as a system of differential equations. When it’s put into graphable form, the transmissibility factors actually end up in the exponent rather than the base.

    Of the differential equations in the SIR model, the most interesting is the rate of total current infections, which is ⅅt𝐼 = 𝛽𝘚𝘐 – 𝛾𝘐 where 𝛽 is the transmission rate, 𝘚 is the number of susceptible people, 𝘐 is the number of currently infected people and 𝛾 is the recovery rate, which is defined as the inverse of the recovery period — if it takes 10 days to recover, then 𝛾 = .1 which means 10 percent of infected people recover each day. The transmission rate 𝛽 is defined as single-encounter transmission risk times the number of people encountered.

    In this model, it turns out that R0 = 𝛽/ 𝛾. So, 𝛽 = 𝛾R0 , which means that the R0 component is contained within 𝛽. And it does in fact end up in the exponent due to what happens when the function ⅅt𝐼 = 𝛽𝘚𝘐 – 𝛾𝘐 is integrated.

    I don’t remember how to properly integrate this whole function, but the linked paper integrates the 𝛽𝘚𝘐 component of it, and because 𝘚 = 1-𝘐, once integrated, the left side of the equation ends up with natural logarithms, which then require exponentiation on the other side, placing the 𝛽 term in the exponent. This is why the growth-rate term ends up in the exponent in models that take susceptibility, total infectious cases and total recovered or immune people into account.

    Anyway, both the full SIR model and the naïve I = R0^t form behave very similarly until a significant portion of the population becomes infected and is therefore no longer susceptible. This means people confidently asserting that the disease will slow down when warmer whether hits may find that the seasonality adjustment is nowhere near enough to put the brakes on the growth rate when the entire population is initially susceptible.

    The difference between 2^t and 1.8^t doesn’t produce much practical difference.

  29. The HBD crowd really got it’s passion up for this virus. Notice, seeing the country flooded by 3rd worlders didn’t do that. They just made dry observations about it.

    But when they might personally might get sick? Oh boy, now it’s time to go from observer to advocate!

    • Agree: Dano, Yojimbo/Zatoichi
    • Replies: @prime noticer
    "The HBD crowd really got it’s passion up for this virus."

    no, just the boomers in HBD. like Charles Murray, Steve wouldn't lift a finger to do anything about the end of America. he's just here to comment about it with snark. his life has mostly been lived in America 1.0 and man, those were some good times. but he's semi retired now, and he's not about to get into any personal trouble trying to do anything about the end of America 1.0. especially don't talk about the jews who are mainly making it happen, since the jews could shut down this website and end his snark blogging if he talks about them too much.

    but ho boy, this virus comes around and suddenly he's Mr Action. we need to do this, we need to do that. where was all that fire the last 20 years, when we could have done something to save America?

  30. @Smithsonian_6
    Some more fascinating mathematical modelling of mitigation strategies.
    https://youtu.be/gxAaO2rsdIs

    TLDW: stay home and wash your hands.

    Should be understandable by the general public.

    Of course, travel restrictions are downplayed and there’s some harping on testing–enough that anti-Trumpers will feel themselves vindicated.

    Well, it’s too late to use global travel restrictions to stop the spread. So, we’re looking at intra-national travel restrictions instead. I saw, on local (Boston area) news last night, some Cape Cod residents lamenting an early influx of New Yorkers to the Cape this year (implication was New Yorkers with their “foreign load”).

  31. (Insert Bill Paxton Aliens “We’re all gonna die, aren’t we?” scene here.)

  32. No, NOBODY is in the crosshairs of the Grim Reaper. The Grim Reaper is not a sniper with a bolt-action .308. He’s armed with a scythe. There are indeed people within 21 ft. of the Grim Reaper though, and that’s if they’re armed and regulated.

    • Replies: @Cortes
    Well said.

    And those heading for the hills (or The Hamptons) might have an appointment there:

    “A merchant in Baghdad sends his servant to the marketplace for provisions. Soon afterwards, the servant comes home white and trembling and tells him that in the marketplace, he was jostled by a woman, whom he recognized as Death, who made a threatening gesture. Borrowing the merchant’s horse, he flees at great speed to Samarra, a distance of about 75 miles (125 km), where he believes Death will not find him. The merchant then goes to the marketplace and finds Death, and asks why she made the threatening gesture to his servant. She replies, “That was not a threatening gesture, it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Baghdad, for I have an appointment with him tonight in Samarra.””
  33. Admissions to New York’s ICU’s are less than half of what they were the day before. Another “anecdote” that Trump’s “unfounded, reckless, anti science” opinion may have been right about Hydroxychloroquine/Azithromycin therapy. I’m not gonna lie, I can’t wait for it to happen.

    “The state has 1,755 patients in ICU beds, and 7,328 patients hospitalized overall, Cuomo said in his briefing today.

    But Cuomo had some relatively good news: The number of daily ICU admissions and hospitalizations has dropped slightly. On Thursday, the state had 374 new ICU admissions, he said. Friday those dropped to 172 new ICU patients”

  34. @Jack D

    Masks don’t need to be worn [by people who] are not in routine contact with sick (or potentially sick people). SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks). Masks should be conserved for healthcare providers
     
    Masks are really magical. When worn by healthcare providers they provide protection to them, but when you wear one, it does nothing, nothing I tell you. They are similar to guns, which only provide protection when worn by officers of the state. Also global warming - when Al Gore flies in his private jet, none is produced but your miserable coach seat creates it. We live surrounded by magic, we are just too blind to see it.

    My apologies, I meant to click Agree!

    My hands are a bit shaky. I’ve been drinking coffee all day with no EtOH to counteract the caffeine.

    • LOL: vhrm
    • Replies: @A123

    My apologies, I meant to click Agree!
     
    FYI: The site appears to allow only one "AGREE/DISAGREE/ETC" per post.

    If you have not used up your allotment, try adding your desired respose. That should also, by rule, eliminate the prior response.

    PEACE 😷
  35. * When infectious virus particles rather than viral RNA are measured, the drop is even more dramatic. If substantiated, this means that after 5 days of hchlor/az therapy, patients are much less contagious. (This is new: to my knowledge, Raoult is the only one routinely performing the cumbersome assay of infectious viruses on clinical samples in a study like this.)

    * Hchlor/az is unhelpful (or marginally helpful) for critically ill patients.

    A possibly similar process that some of you may have the misfortune of being familiar with is a cold sore outbreak on your lips (aka herpes simplex virus 1). If you hit it early with Abreva it goes away quickly and does no damage. The longer it takes to catch it the more damage gets done and after about 2 or 3 days it’s too late to intervene and you have to ride out the whole thing.
    Of course, damaged lip cells vs damaged lung cells has a VERY different impact on the rest of the body, but the similarity i’m pointing to is this issue of tissue damage that still is there even after the virus replication is stopped or slowed if you don’t stop/slow it soon enough.

    Since this got long and boring here’s my first MORE.

    [MORE]

    So with cold sore flares the virus that normally lives in some nerves near the mouth with no symptoms starts replicating near the skin after some trigger (illness, sunburn, stress, chapped lips). It then follows the same pattern which is in my observation tingle/swelling -> hard clear blisters -> soft cloudy merged blisters -> injured skin -> healing. Takes a good 2.5 – 3 weeks for me anyway.

    The actual damage is done up front with those blisters. That’s when the virus is replicating hard core in your cells and blowing them up. Then the immune system seems to get that under control, but you’re still left with an injured lip from those blown up cells and it takes a while for the skin to heal even with no additional damage being done.

    From a treatment point of view, if you notice the thing coming on and hit it with Abreva (doconasol) starting early and often (or possibly with some prescription-in-the-US-but-otc-in-EU antivirals), you nip it in the bud and the whole thing stops overnight often with no visible damage.

    If you hit it in the first several days it still limits the damage some and the eruption is smaller than it would have been, but there’s still damage that has to heal. After the first several days though, it doesn’t really do anything because all the damage’s already been done.

    An interesting thing i’ve noticed is that the clinical studies of doconasol make it sound like it’s barely effective: e.g. reduces duration of symptoms from 5 days to 4 days (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11464183 )

    But if you read the reviews on amazon many of them sound a lot like what i described above (https://smile.amazon.com/Abreva-Docosanol-Treatment-Approved-Blister/dp/B071K8PFHG/ )

    So this also captures that some people clearly have a worse natural course than others (e.g in the study the mean resolution was 5 days, but clearly for many it’s longer than that ) AND the fact that you have to stop the virus early before it damages a bunch of cells.

    • Replies: @Chief Seattle
    @vhrm agree with your analysis of cold sores. Catching it early makes all the difference.

    I didn't realize that Abreva was over the counter. I got a prescription for it once, but my sores usually pop up every year or two, so inevitably I don't have any around and it's too late to get it.

    So I've found two other things that are effective for me. The most effective by far is to stop eating when the tingle starts. That's very hard, but it works. The cold sore seems to grow most immediately after eating. And sugar causes the most growth of all. If I can abstain from eating for the rest of the day then the cold sore will usually go away or be minor.

    The other thing that works for me is garlic. Placing raw garlic directly on the sore. It's not as reliable, but it seems a lot better than nothing.
    , @JerseyJeffersonian
    My experience squares with yours; i.e., if you have learned to recognize the signs of the incipent cold sore very early, and you jump on it with Abreva, the course of the affliction, while still unpleasant, will be considerably reduced in its intensity. If the effect of early intervention with chloroquinone, or hydroxychloroquinone would be similar to that of Abreva in respect to a cold sore, limiting the scope of the initial damages, then this would be major.

    With cold sores, I have never experienced opportunistic infections, but in the case of CoVID-19, that does seem to be a major problem, hence the use of azithromycin or similar to make conditions unfavorable for opportunistic bacterial infections which, as with AIDS with its negative effect on the body's white cells, swings the door wide open for those subsequent infections (read bacterial pneumonia in particular), and these potentially leading to death.
    , @Aj7575
    Your anecdote about abreva mirrors what people say about zinc lozenges and the common cold - mainly that it is effective only if you treat it right away.
  36. @Wilkey

    What’s the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female? The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?
     
    Because they get it, then spread it to people with underlying conditions. Welcome back from your two month coma. Hell, welcome to life post-1847. Ignaz Semmelweis sends his regards.

    Well OBVIOUSLY it makes much more sense to lock down the 97 % of people who will never be at serious threat from the current corona virus mutation, then trying to isolate the 3% of people who might actually be at risk. Not to mention that when you have a “lockdown”, but almost everyone still passes through grocery stores, elevators, gas stations, trucking depots, pharmacies, and every other “necessary” business, it aint much of a lockdown. AND, not to mention that prisons and jails, which literally are already on lockdown, are releasing their prisoners to protect them from infection, which of course makes perfect sense.

    Here are the facts, fearmongers:

    1. Most people will never get an active Covid-19 infection.
    2. Most people who do, will have a mild reaction.
    3. Most of the people who do have a severe reaction can already be treated with effective, known means.

    And the Big Enchilada:

    4. Summer comes, the virus goes away. Meanwhile, the worldwide, coordinated, massive increase in Police State measures remain. And that will kill 1000 times as many people as any virus.

    • Agree: BB753, TomSchmidt
    • Replies: @Yojimbo/Zatoichi
    Yes, but then there's also,

    5. Fall into Winter, the virus returns.

    How will it return? Similar to the 1918 Flu Epidemic, which was worse than the first wave? Or like Passover, the US will be spared the worst of it? If only we had some kind of blood to sprinkle on our collective door of the nation so that COVID-19 would pass over us.
    , @Thomas

    Well OBVIOUSLY it makes much more sense to lock down the 97 % of people who will never be at serious threat from the current corona virus mutation, then trying to isolate the 3% of people who might actually be at risk.
     
    That's a capital idea! Now we only need to know who those people who will never (your words) be at serious threat are. 40% of hospitalizations right now from coronavirus are of patients under 55. (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/18/health/coronavirus-young-people.html) And there still are people in their 20s, 30s, 40s, even children, who are becoming seriously ill, even dying. (Steve's observation about the degree to which people vainly hope they can predict who does or doesn't get sick or die from something deserves a fresh mention.)

    Then we need to figure out how to "isolate" that 3% who might be at risk, whatever that may mean. Are we sending them to an island somewhere? How about a prison? If they live in a multigenerational household, say, with millennial boomerang children, or grandchildren what do we do then? Should we spring for an apartment for the kids or put the grandkids in foster care? Oh, and what do we do when those people who are at risk need groceries? Or need to go to a hospital? Assume that, in contrast to the ones living with younger relatives, they don't have anyone to shop for them.


    Summer comes, the virus goes away.
     
    There is absolutely nothing, no data or anything else, that supports this. Only an assumption that this virus works like a cold or flu (for that matter, that it works like a seasonal flu: the 1918 Spanish flu struck in the spring and summer). This virus has been spreading among humans, as far as we know, only since November or December of last year. Flu season starts in October. We know nothing about how the seasons might affect this bug. Oh, and even if that is true, summer in the northern hemisphere is winter in the southern hemisphere.
  37. @Achmed E. Newman
    No, NOBODY is in the crosshairs of the Grim Reaper. The Grim Reaper is not a sniper with a bolt-action .308. He's armed with a scythe. There are indeed people within 21 ft. of the Grim Reaper though, and that's if they're armed and regulated.

    Well said.

    And those heading for the hills (or The Hamptons) might have an appointment there:

    “A merchant in Baghdad sends his servant to the marketplace for provisions. Soon afterwards, the servant comes home white and trembling and tells him that in the marketplace, he was jostled by a woman, whom he recognized as Death, who made a threatening gesture. Borrowing the merchant’s horse, he flees at great speed to Samarra, a distance of about 75 miles (125 km), where he believes Death will not find him. The merchant then goes to the marketplace and finds Death, and asks why she made the threatening gesture to his servant. She replies, “That was not a threatening gesture, it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Baghdad, for I have an appointment with him tonight in Samarra.””

    • LOL: Redneck farmer, bomag
    • Replies: @ChrisZ
    Cortes, you nailed it.

    Boris Karloff gives an amazing reading of "Appointment at Samarra" in a 1960s vintage movie, incidentally.
    , @Mr McKenna
    David Geffen laughs at you--and at Death!--from his superyacht in the Grenadines.

    https://media.guestofaguest.com/t_article_content/gofg-media/2019/03/1/52118/gef.jpg

    "David Geffen’s thought process: 'Hey you know what, millions are losing their jobs, can’t pay their rent and they’re worried about a deadly pandemic, I bet they’d love to know how I’m doing. Fire up the copter so we can take some more pics of my yacht! They’ll love this!!!'" film producer Robby Starbuck reacted.

    Geffen has since made his Instagram account private.

    https://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/david-geffen-yacht-coronavirus
     

    It's that legendary 'self-awareness' among the Ruling Class which I'm beginning to wonder isn't genetic. But I do know one film producer named Robby who isn't working with Dreamworks next year.
  38. @Smithsonian_6
    And in more bad news, it turns out that a ventilator might not do that much good.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-intensive-care-uk-patients-50-per-cent-survival-rate

    Fifty percent survival rate for a ventilator patient with a respiratory ailment is normal.

  39. Anonymous[212] • Disclaimer says:

    Didier Raoult keeps emphasizing EARLY TREATMENT!!!

    He also added the third zinc component to the regimen last week.

    Seems like very few are actually going to his twitter…

    @raoult_didier

    His latest video has subtitles (click the center icon in the row of three at lower right of screen) He looks eccentric with the rock n roll hair in still photos. But in the video he’s a completely normal speaker…

    Considering his long career it is absurd to think that he’s fudging data. Check his wiki.

    Also he’s a groundbreaking researcher. Not some country doctor. Check his wiki.

    Good news is that this man has decided to fight. This guy put up his twitter just last week because he realized he’s in a vicious all out war and needs to go around the MSM.

    • Replies: @ic1000
    Dr. Raoult posted an updated counter on his twitter feed, at noon GMT today (3/29/20):
    https://mobile.twitter.com/raoult_didier/status/1244237477826703360/photo/1

    If the image doesn't show up, the key points (translated from French) are:

    At IHU Mediterranee Infection [Dr. Raoult's hospital in Marseilles]:
    * Number of patients treated (hydroxychloroquine ± azithromycin) -- 1,003
    * Number of deceased with >3 days of treatment (hydroxychloroquine ± azithromycin) -- 1

    Edits:

    Here is the dynamic page at the IHU's website.

    And, "Nombre de deces avec >3 jours de traitement..." likely means "Number who have died after surviving 3-days of being treated...", e.g. excluding patients who were so ill that they died after only 2 days.
  40. @Wilkey
    Well at least that solves the ventilator shortage. 🙁

    Half survive though so it really doesn’t. Also covid patients stay on vents longer so the virus will exasperate existing shortages.

  41. Anonymous[212] • Disclaimer says:

    The Cuomo press conference yesterday was revealing …. now we know:

    THERE IS NO HIGH DEMAND FOR RESPIRATORS IN NYC.

    He admitted it. He said that it still hasn’t happened.

    This reminds of the white helmet stagecraft in Syria.

    Check out Buck Sexton media fave and CIA man with his ICU deluge claim on his twitter feed …the commenters are calling BULLSHIT.

    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
    212, On Thursday Cuomo said if you had re-though it, probably would not have quarantined (his word ) everyone. And now on to how to fix NY's "shattered" economy.
  42. @Jack D

    Masks don’t need to be worn [by people who] are not in routine contact with sick (or potentially sick people). SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks). Masks should be conserved for healthcare providers
     
    Masks are really magical. When worn by healthcare providers they provide protection to them, but when you wear one, it does nothing, nothing I tell you. They are similar to guns, which only provide protection when worn by officers of the state. Also global warming - when Al Gore flies in his private jet, none is produced but your miserable coach seat creates it. We live surrounded by magic, we are just too blind to see it.

    Reminds me of how the army recommends bullet-proof vests for soldiers but doesn’t recommend them for ordinary people.

  43. @Bostonvegas
    I would like to see a racial,gender and age graph of the death toll....I'm guessing for once it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!

    The Atlantic had an article that posited that while men were much more likely to die, “feminism” (yes, not even women) was the real victim of this pandemic.

    • Replies: @sayless
    "feminism was the real victim of this pandemic."

    Well every cloud has a silver lining.
  44. In the U.S., the patchwork of state and local social-distancing measures halfheartedly endorsed by President Trump will not flatten the curve.

    Ridiculous.

    SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks).

    Spreads by “contact”? What the hell? How is that supposed to work? It’s just absorbed through the skin? And it’s pretty damn easy to avoid contact with people in most job situations and financial transactions, so how is this thing going to keep spreading?

    • Agree: Sean
    • Replies: @Johnny Rico
    That is the major omission from all the analysis to date and the professionals, the scientists, the epidemiologists, the virologists, none of them can admit that they just do not have a really good grasp about how it is being transmitted so effectively. That they cannot spell out exactly what "by touch" means or explain why masks might be useless is a huge fail for the medical profession.

    A mailman sent an email to This Week in Virology last week asking if he could catch it from the mail or from a mailbox and the "experts" fumbled with the question for 5 minutes producing nothing.

    We can build electric robot cars but we can't test this shit is a laboratory? Did they close MIT?
  45. Here is the most recent (03/28/2020) log-scale chart, which is updated daily at Wattsupwiththat. The blue zone represents normal seasonal flu deaths. The red zone represents three times the normal monthly total of flu deaths, i.e. the point when hospital load becomes a concern.

    As you can see, the curves of the worst affected countries are all starting to flatten noticeably. This accords with the basic belief that while coronavirus is not nothing, it is very, very far from being apocalyptic.

    • Replies: @Redneck farmer
    "Wait I gotta find a new trend/ cause the line on the graph is low and we can't have that"
    , @Captain Tripps
    Thanks, ID. Germany noticeably missing in there; I'd like to see theirs added for comparison as well.
  46. Anonymous[277] • Disclaimer says:
    @Smithsonian_6
    And in more bad news, it turns out that a ventilator might not do that much good.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-intensive-care-uk-patients-50-per-cent-survival-rate

    A ventilator is always a supportive measure; it cures nothing, it simply buys time for treatment/ patient’s own body to effectively respond to whatever insult caused the patient to be put on the ventilator in the first place. A ventilator is just a pair of crutches for your lungs.

  47. @Wilkey

    What’s the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female? The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?
     
    Because they get it, then spread it to people with underlying conditions. Welcome back from your two month coma. Hell, welcome to life post-1847. Ignaz Semmelweis sends his regards.

    The alternate policy is that folk with underlying conditions quarantine, and the younger folk keep the motor running. It is a rational response. Perhaps not as functional as your policy, you are welcome to support your case.

  48. The latest from my zip code. I live in a NoCal suburb. All government offices are on skeleton occupation except for the transportation functions. BART is running. The busses are running. Airplanes are flying. The public golf courses are closed. When I went hiking on Friday there were more hikers, bikers, runners, and dogs than I have ever seen before, and I go hiking all the time.

    Nearly every business is open. The only private businesses which I have seen closed are the 24 hour fitness and one starbucks. Besides the closed starbucks I have observed two that are open. A bunch of the restaurants are selling takeout and delivery only. The Walmart and the Safeway shelves are loaded with an occasional empty spot. I usually buy the 18 egg carton and Safeway only had 12 egg cartons the last time I went, for example. The Chinese customers are mostly wearing masks. The white and black peeps are almost all unmasked.

    Have not seen one human in a panic. The most worried person I have seen is my apartment manager who is borderline obese and smokes cigarettes. A couple months ago she was out on the sidewalk smoking when I walked by and I greeted her with “Still haven’t quit smoking yet?” Pretty sure she wants to quit smoking but I don’t think I am going to mention it to her again any time soon.

    • Replies: @dfordoom

    BART is running. The busses are running. Airplanes are flying. The public golf courses are closed.
     
    Because clearly you're much much more likely to catch the disease on a golf course than on a crowded bus. Yes, it all makes perfect sense.
    , @Mr McKenna
    She'll probably quit soon ;)

    But seriously, conditions are about the same where I live: most people say they've changed their habits, and maybe clean a door knob or two, but for the most part all of the strictures are just too much hassle. They say they'll follow the rules if they get affected personally. Like so.

  49. “Not paywalled, and updated daily from Johns Hopkins data. Inspired by Burn-Murdoch, “Wade” keeps four interactive graphs updated at his backwards webpage 91-DIVOC. Find the region where you live, toggle between linear and logarithmic scales to see how it is faring compared to the hot-spots in the news. It’s sobering.”

    The new infection rate looks remarkably low for California. Has California peaked (for this 1st SARS-CoV-2 round) in infection rate? Nothing like what I would have imaged looking forward from 3 week back, when we were 2nd to Washington in positive tests: New York not yet looking too/so bad.

    I think three things may have contributed:

    One, the weather in February was near “Spring like” for most of the state (March has been more typical).
    Two, Stanford University shut down right quick after producing its own test, determining 3 infections, and then promptly closing its doors. This led others (universities, grade schools….) to follow.
    Three, Governor Newsom got the results back from the 3 county surveillance testing, jolting him into action.

    07196F2B-BE07-43F9-ACFD-81DA2A4F7539

    I’d say based off his daily TV performances, Newsom the once lightweight, is headed for National office.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    California is very near the bottom of the states in tests per capita, so the infection counts are relatively low.

    But the social distancing has been pretty sizable for the last 10 days or so. Walking around my suburban neighborhood today, it looked like people were now going for 20 feet of distance between passerbys. Traffic is extremely light.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    , @vhrm
    California has been shady and opaque about testing numbers. cca Tuesday we had tested 27k , but with 12k of those still pending results!
    (later it was 68k administered with 48k (of those, afaict) still pending
    https://calmatters.org/health/2020/03/california-coronavirus-test-results-delayed-backlog/)

    So... who the heck knows what's actually going on. This also means that by the time positives are announced we're looking days (sometimes over a week) into the past.

    Also, Gov Newsom at today's press conference announced hospitalization and icu numbers and deltas since yesterday.
    Either he or someone else said that he looks at that data every morning, first thing. Great! Is this data published anywhere? (afaict, no)
    (
    https://www.mercurynews.com/2020/03/28/coronavirus-gov-newsom-says-number-of-patients-in-icus-doubled-overnight/)

    Anyway, i think the spread has just been naturally lower here anyway. Maybe it's the lower density, maybe it's that we don't have real winter.

    , @Stan
    The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has advised doctors to only test patients for the coronavirus if a positive result would actually impact their treatment. The department said in an official letter on Thursday that it was “shifting from a strategy of case containment to slowing disease transmission and averting excess morbidity and mortality.” The recommendation signaled a realization that there is little hope of containing the outbreak and came as a result of a growing number of patients and a limited number of tests. The decision could make it difficult to ever accurately determine the number of coronavirus cases in L.A. County, the country’s second-largest municipal health system.

    Read it at Los Angeles Times
  50. @chucho
    It's somewhat laughable at this stage of the game that people are still approaching this as an Apollo type of problem-solving event. It's akin to starting the football season with the USC cheerleading squad as your offense and trying to make 1st quarter adjustments. It doesn't really matter if you send Chrissy up the middle or pitch her a lateral toss - she is still going to get her collar bone broken by a charging linebacker.

    The virus is already out there. It will continue to kill people. We will never know which measures worked and which ones did not, because the data is too sparse and poorly collected. Even if a reliable "answer" could be determined, it will already be too late.

    Unless a "return to normalcy" takes place immediately, the economic, social and political consequences of the shutdown will dwarf any public health concern. And unlike the virus, no one will be spared those effects. The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return.

    I get the analogy, but if I were a linebacker I certainly wouldn’t drive through the SC song girl, but instead take my time bringing her down to the ground. And maybe, as an added bonus, some of her teammates would try to engage in blocking for her.

    • Replies: @Inquiring Mind
    Finally, a man who understands the true purpose of a coed touch-football game.

    The goal is not scoring, or at least not in the conventional sense.
  51. The medical professionals panicked because they suck at math and this virus is not a major outbreak according to this doctor. First 7 and a half minutes.

    • Thanks: RichardTaylor
  52. OT: Co-architect of Boston City Hall dies

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/03/28/metro/architect-michael-mckinnell-co-designer-boston-city-hall-dies-84/

    A reminder that one of the worst buildings in America was brought to you by a Brit and a German.

    • Replies: @The Germ Theory of Disease
    Yes, that thing is a true crime against humanity.

    On the bright side, it did inspire Jonathan Richman's hilarious song "Government Center," which along with "Pablo Picasso" and the Replacements' O. Henry-esque "Skyway," is one of the three funniest songs in the rock and roll canon.
    , @northeast
    Agree. Worst public building in the world!
  53. @Coemgen
    My apologies, I meant to click Agree!

    My hands are a bit shaky. I've been drinking coffee all day with no EtOH to counteract the caffeine.

    My apologies, I meant to click Agree!

    FYI: The site appears to allow only one “AGREE/DISAGREE/ETC” per post.

    If you have not used up your allotment, try adding your desired respose. That should also, by rule, eliminate the prior response.

    PEACE 😷

    • Replies: @Coemgen

    FYI: The site appears to allow only one “AGREE/DISAGREE/ETC” per post.

    If you have not used up your allotment, try adding your desired respose. That should also, by rule, eliminate the prior response.
     
    Worked like a charm—thanks!
  54. In the event you’re interested, Stanford University’s Artificial Intelligence department is going to livestream its Covid-19 conference on April Fool’s day @ 9:00AM PST.

    962D5988-14CA-48D2-8504-F51912ABD9AC

    https://hai.stanford.edu/events/covid-19-and-ai-virtual-conference/livestream

  55. @danand

    "Not paywalled, and updated daily from Johns Hopkins data. Inspired by Burn-Murdoch, “Wade” keeps four interactive graphs updated at his backwards webpage 91-DIVOC. Find the region where you live, toggle between linear and logarithmic scales to see how it is faring compared to the hot-spots in the news. It’s sobering."
     
    The new infection rate looks remarkably low for California. Has California peaked (for this 1st SARS-CoV-2 round) in infection rate? Nothing like what I would have imaged looking forward from 3 week back, when we were 2nd to Washington in positive tests: New York not yet looking too/so bad.

    I think three things may have contributed:

    One, the weather in February was near "Spring like" for most of the state (March has been more typical).
    Two, Stanford University shut down right quick after producing its own test, determining 3 infections, and then promptly closing its doors. This led others (universities, grade schools....) to follow.
    Three, Governor Newsom got the results back from the 3 county surveillance testing, jolting him into action.

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

    I'd say based off his daily TV performances, Newsom the once lightweight, is headed for National office.

    California is very near the bottom of the states in tests per capita, so the infection counts are relatively low.

    But the social distancing has been pretty sizable for the last 10 days or so. Walking around my suburban neighborhood today, it looked like people were now going for 20 feet of distance between passerbys. Traffic is extremely light.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    • Replies: @Yojimbo/Zatoichi
    Fewer traffic and cars must mean an overall improved quality of air and less smog. A family member out there mentioned there's been a significant decrease of cars on the road, and for the first time, the skies are clearing and the air is a bit more breathable (less smog). Would that be a fairly accurate estimation of SoCal at present?
    , @PiltdownMan

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.
     
    If you'll indulge me ...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NuAsGCmp8Jc
    , @Whiskey
    This Kung Flu panic is all hype. Where are all the dead homeless?

    They have the worst health status, live rough, do not social distance and abuse feud and booze

    Where are all the dead homeless? Dead bodies attract attention.

    , @AnonAnon
    Steve, did you see LA County is reporting the number of cases on a city by city basis? https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-03-28/these-l-a-county-communities-have-coronavirus-cases-and-these-dont


    Also, the University of Washington published their projections for each state and the country: https://covid19.healthdata.org/projections. They predict California will peak for resource use on April 24 & the US will have ~81,000 dead by August 3 (California: ~6100 dead).
    , @Charles Erwin Wilson Three

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.
     
    Sight of the gallows Steve? Do you feel lucky? Sight-of-the-gallows focusing your mind?

    I can tell you when I am country running, and having them circling above me, it gives me pause.

    I am happy to have them convert carcasses into offal, but I have some notion that I might trip, hit my head on a rock, and wake up to those bastards eating my flesh. I have the same sense about crows. Corvinus and his brethren doing what libs do. And only because they aspire to vampire status. Parasites gonna feast on the host.
  56. @chucho
    It's somewhat laughable at this stage of the game that people are still approaching this as an Apollo type of problem-solving event. It's akin to starting the football season with the USC cheerleading squad as your offense and trying to make 1st quarter adjustments. It doesn't really matter if you send Chrissy up the middle or pitch her a lateral toss - she is still going to get her collar bone broken by a charging linebacker.

    The virus is already out there. It will continue to kill people. We will never know which measures worked and which ones did not, because the data is too sparse and poorly collected. Even if a reliable "answer" could be determined, it will already be too late.

    Unless a "return to normalcy" takes place immediately, the economic, social and political consequences of the shutdown will dwarf any public health concern. And unlike the virus, no one will be spared those effects. The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return.

    Agree.

    Here’s what I said to Greg Cochran, who’s on team #ShutItDown

    Greg, you combine:

    an unwarranted optimism about a self-induced depression more severe than the Great Depression (40% decline versus Q4 2019?, 30% drop in the stock market, unemployment more than doubling in less than a month)

    an unwarranted optimism that stay at home orders will be complied with and work

    an unwarranted optimism that the virus won’t still keep spreading or re-emerge because of asymptomatic carriers

    an unwarranted pessimism about the damage CV causes people under 70 without major comorbidities.

    On point 1, currently a number of industries are completely shut down. Zero revenue, continued expenses. They will default on their rent, fire their employees, overwhelm our courts with bankruptcy and debt cases. The shock of the housing bubble collapse caused a deep and long worldwide recession, but was tiny in comparison.

    On point three and four, all we really have is the word of the Chinese government on the effectiveness of extreme shutdowns.

    The Italian shutdown doesn’t seem to have done much. Ohio shut down schools and businesses sooner than its neighbors but has CV rates comparable to them. No mass deaths in Iran despite very weak compliance with shutdown orders.

    I think the shutdown measures so far in the US were warranted based on what we knew in early to mid March. The case for extending them for months is not convincing, and the burden is on those who want WWII mobilization level expansion of government size and power, not the skeptics.

    I think CV will be really awful. I criticized Trump back in January for not stopping all Chinese flights. I dumped most of my stocks in February. But at this point CV is looking like it is not “just the flu” but “just the flu” x 10. That’s not grounds to induce another Great Depression. And it is far from clear even doing that will substantially reduce total mortality.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
    I agree with most of what you wrote.

    I think the cell phone tracking study that followed the movement of phones from one spring break beach in Ft. Lauderdale proves how useless a shutdown is in a country that is used to cheap and easy freedom of movement.

    I disagree that CV will be awful. Based on the cellphone movement study, I believe this virus has vastly outraced our ability to track and test for it. This means that the current total number of cases is far, far too low, leading to inflated CFR numbers. I think the Diamond Princess CFR is high because there is no way that the elderly people who passed did not have other health issues.

    I've been looking for images and videos of bodies stacked up like cordwood.

    Beyond the hospital in Iran, this was the closest I could find:

    https://twitter.com/BNODesk/status/1243965506983428096

    Five military cargo trucks that could be carrying anything. That's it.
    , @Wilkey

    On point 1, currently a number of industries are completely shut down. Zero revenue, continued expenses. They will default on their rent...
     
    And what will the landlords do, evict them? And lease their spaces to whom?

    To a large extent the landlords are going to have to eat their losses. Their tenants are shut down because of some rather unique circumstances - circumstances which hopefully will end soon. They can try to force them to pay, but if they soon find themselves with vacancies it won’t be worth the hassle of recovering a month or two of rent.
  57. @Ron Mexico
    I get the analogy, but if I were a linebacker I certainly wouldn't drive through the SC song girl, but instead take my time bringing her down to the ground. And maybe, as an added bonus, some of her teammates would try to engage in blocking for her.

    Finally, a man who understands the true purpose of a coed touch-football game.

    The goal is not scoring, or at least not in the conventional sense.

    • Agree: Redneck farmer
    • Thanks: Ron Mexico
    • LOL: Captain Tripps
  58. @George
    "this pandemic is going to be bad. Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs."

    Please correct me if I am wrong. Based on the NYC experience https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-daily-data-summary-deaths.pdf

    From the NYC experience there are 517 deaths attributed to coronavirus. 425 deaths are said to have had underlying conditions while and additional 78 deaths are characterized as underlying conditions pending.

    If the data is considered pristine then a minimum of 425/517 =82% of deaths had underlying conditions. A maximum of (425+78)/517 = 97% of deaths had underlying conditions.

    65 and older were 369 / 517 = 70% of deaths but I think it might turn out that age is not the best predictor as age correlates with serious underlying conditions.

    What's the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female?

    The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?

    Does the lockdown strategy make sense for young people and even all people without underlying conditions?

    “The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down? ”

    Because shut up, they explained.

    • Replies: @The Germ Theory of Disease
    When you consider the actual nature of the NYC 0 - 17 cohort, "being locked down" is just training for their future careers of being locked up.
  59. This may sound weird since I am not in any way a health professional but in coming months, years there will be a huge increase in a condition called tracheal stenosis.

    So when they ventilate you they stick a tube down your trachea (the tube from your lungs to the upper neck and through various mechanisms leads to you nose and mouth.

    The problem they discovered early is the good spot for ventilating people is exquisitely sensitive. You know how if you press the skin on the back of your hand it goes white? Well do that to tracheal tissue it dies and developed a ring of scar tissue, which narrows, closing off the airway and when it closes, goodbye. You can stretch it out but eventually you need to cut out the bad rings of trachea, stretch out the rest, stitch them together (while the patient is on a heart/lung machine with all the pump head problems).

    There is one hospital in America (frankly the world) good at this – Massachusetts General. And due to the natural history of this disease…I am not hopeful.

  60. @Bostonvegas
    I would like to see a racial,gender and age graph of the death toll....I'm guessing for once it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!

    for once it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!

    Not hard at all.

    [.forbes.com]
    The Economic Impact Of COVID-19 Will Hit Minorities The Hardest

  61. @Bragadocious
    OT: Co-architect of Boston City Hall dies

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/03/28/metro/architect-michael-mckinnell-co-designer-boston-city-hall-dies-84/

    A reminder that one of the worst buildings in America was brought to you by a Brit and a German.

    https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/oC-ZWtb135znJihAqa2eA0NC6lI=/0x0:4200x2800/1200x675/filters:focal(1764x1064:2436x1736)/cdn.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_image/image/62799071/shutterstock_696157549.0.jpg

    Yes, that thing is a true crime against humanity.

    On the bright side, it did inspire Jonathan Richman’s hilarious song “Government Center,” which along with “Pablo Picasso” and the Replacements’ O. Henry-esque “Skyway,” is one of the three funniest songs in the rock and roll canon.

    • Agree: Lot
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    On the bright side, it did inspire Jonathan Richman’s hilarious song “Government Center,”

     

    Jonathan Richman, the Norm Crosby of rock and roll.

    However, GC replaced Scollay Square, which made it into the Kingston Trio's "M.T.A." Hit songs about Boston were like Red Sox pennants-- one would happen every decade or two. Next up was the Standells' "Dirty Water".

    They were from L.A., and the Trio, 2/3 haole Hawaiian, was also based in California. Richman is a native of Greater Boston, with an accent to match, but is no Yankee. He says he is "Russian Jewish in every direction."
  62. @vhrm

    * When infectious virus particles rather than viral RNA are measured, the drop is even more dramatic. If substantiated, this means that after 5 days of hchlor/az therapy, patients are much less contagious. (This is new: to my knowledge, Raoult is the only one routinely performing the cumbersome assay of infectious viruses on clinical samples in a study like this.)
    ...
    * Hchlor/az is unhelpful (or marginally helpful) for critically ill patients.

     

    A possibly similar process that some of you may have the misfortune of being familiar with is a cold sore outbreak on your lips (aka herpes simplex virus 1). If you hit it early with Abreva it goes away quickly and does no damage. The longer it takes to catch it the more damage gets done and after about 2 or 3 days it's too late to intervene and you have to ride out the whole thing.
    Of course, damaged lip cells vs damaged lung cells has a VERY different impact on the rest of the body, but the similarity i'm pointing to is this issue of tissue damage that still is there even after the virus replication is stopped or slowed if you don't stop/slow it soon enough.

    Since this got long and boring here's my first MORE.


    So with cold sore flares the virus that normally lives in some nerves near the mouth with no symptoms starts replicating near the skin after some trigger (illness, sunburn, stress, chapped lips). It then follows the same pattern which is in my observation tingle/swelling -> hard clear blisters -> soft cloudy merged blisters -> injured skin -> healing. Takes a good 2.5 - 3 weeks for me anyway.

    The actual damage is done up front with those blisters. That's when the virus is replicating hard core in your cells and blowing them up. Then the immune system seems to get that under control, but you're still left with an injured lip from those blown up cells and it takes a while for the skin to heal even with no additional damage being done.

    From a treatment point of view, if you notice the thing coming on and hit it with Abreva (doconasol) starting early and often (or possibly with some prescription-in-the-US-but-otc-in-EU antivirals), you nip it in the bud and the whole thing stops overnight often with no visible damage.

    If you hit it in the first several days it still limits the damage some and the eruption is smaller than it would have been, but there's still damage that has to heal. After the first several days though, it doesn't really do anything because all the damage's already been done.

    An interesting thing i've noticed is that the clinical studies of doconasol make it sound like it's barely effective: e.g. reduces duration of symptoms from 5 days to 4 days (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11464183 )

    But if you read the reviews on amazon many of them sound a lot like what i described above (https://smile.amazon.com/Abreva-Docosanol-Treatment-Approved-Blister/dp/B071K8PFHG/ )

    So this also captures that some people clearly have a worse natural course than others (e.g in the study the mean resolution was 5 days, but clearly for many it's longer than that ) AND the fact that you have to stop the virus early before it damages a bunch of cells.

    agree with your analysis of cold sores. Catching it early makes all the difference.

    I didn’t realize that Abreva was over the counter. I got a prescription for it once, but my sores usually pop up every year or two, so inevitably I don’t have any around and it’s too late to get it.

    So I’ve found two other things that are effective for me. The most effective by far is to stop eating when the tingle starts. That’s very hard, but it works. The cold sore seems to grow most immediately after eating. And sugar causes the most growth of all. If I can abstain from eating for the rest of the day then the cold sore will usually go away or be minor.

    The other thing that works for me is garlic. Placing raw garlic directly on the sore. It’s not as reliable, but it seems a lot better than nothing.

  63. @vhrm

    * When infectious virus particles rather than viral RNA are measured, the drop is even more dramatic. If substantiated, this means that after 5 days of hchlor/az therapy, patients are much less contagious. (This is new: to my knowledge, Raoult is the only one routinely performing the cumbersome assay of infectious viruses on clinical samples in a study like this.)
    ...
    * Hchlor/az is unhelpful (or marginally helpful) for critically ill patients.

     

    A possibly similar process that some of you may have the misfortune of being familiar with is a cold sore outbreak on your lips (aka herpes simplex virus 1). If you hit it early with Abreva it goes away quickly and does no damage. The longer it takes to catch it the more damage gets done and after about 2 or 3 days it's too late to intervene and you have to ride out the whole thing.
    Of course, damaged lip cells vs damaged lung cells has a VERY different impact on the rest of the body, but the similarity i'm pointing to is this issue of tissue damage that still is there even after the virus replication is stopped or slowed if you don't stop/slow it soon enough.

    Since this got long and boring here's my first MORE.


    So with cold sore flares the virus that normally lives in some nerves near the mouth with no symptoms starts replicating near the skin after some trigger (illness, sunburn, stress, chapped lips). It then follows the same pattern which is in my observation tingle/swelling -> hard clear blisters -> soft cloudy merged blisters -> injured skin -> healing. Takes a good 2.5 - 3 weeks for me anyway.

    The actual damage is done up front with those blisters. That's when the virus is replicating hard core in your cells and blowing them up. Then the immune system seems to get that under control, but you're still left with an injured lip from those blown up cells and it takes a while for the skin to heal even with no additional damage being done.

    From a treatment point of view, if you notice the thing coming on and hit it with Abreva (doconasol) starting early and often (or possibly with some prescription-in-the-US-but-otc-in-EU antivirals), you nip it in the bud and the whole thing stops overnight often with no visible damage.

    If you hit it in the first several days it still limits the damage some and the eruption is smaller than it would have been, but there's still damage that has to heal. After the first several days though, it doesn't really do anything because all the damage's already been done.

    An interesting thing i've noticed is that the clinical studies of doconasol make it sound like it's barely effective: e.g. reduces duration of symptoms from 5 days to 4 days (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11464183 )

    But if you read the reviews on amazon many of them sound a lot like what i described above (https://smile.amazon.com/Abreva-Docosanol-Treatment-Approved-Blister/dp/B071K8PFHG/ )

    So this also captures that some people clearly have a worse natural course than others (e.g in the study the mean resolution was 5 days, but clearly for many it's longer than that ) AND the fact that you have to stop the virus early before it damages a bunch of cells.

    My experience squares with yours; i.e., if you have learned to recognize the signs of the incipent cold sore very early, and you jump on it with Abreva, the course of the affliction, while still unpleasant, will be considerably reduced in its intensity. If the effect of early intervention with chloroquinone, or hydroxychloroquinone would be similar to that of Abreva in respect to a cold sore, limiting the scope of the initial damages, then this would be major.

    With cold sores, I have never experienced opportunistic infections, but in the case of CoVID-19, that does seem to be a major problem, hence the use of azithromycin or similar to make conditions unfavorable for opportunistic bacterial infections which, as with AIDS with its negative effect on the body’s white cells, swings the door wide open for those subsequent infections (read bacterial pneumonia in particular), and these potentially leading to death.

  64. @Lot
    Agree.

    Here’s what I said to Greg Cochran, who’s on team #ShutItDown

    Greg, you combine:

    an unwarranted optimism about a self-induced depression more severe than the Great Depression (40% decline versus Q4 2019?, 30% drop in the stock market, unemployment more than doubling in less than a month)

    an unwarranted optimism that stay at home orders will be complied with and work

    an unwarranted optimism that the virus won’t still keep spreading or re-emerge because of asymptomatic carriers

    an unwarranted pessimism about the damage CV causes people under 70 without major comorbidities.

    On point 1, currently a number of industries are completely shut down. Zero revenue, continued expenses. They will default on their rent, fire their employees, overwhelm our courts with bankruptcy and debt cases. The shock of the housing bubble collapse caused a deep and long worldwide recession, but was tiny in comparison.

    On point three and four, all we really have is the word of the Chinese government on the effectiveness of extreme shutdowns.

    The Italian shutdown doesn’t seem to have done much. Ohio shut down schools and businesses sooner than its neighbors but has CV rates comparable to them. No mass deaths in Iran despite very weak compliance with shutdown orders.

    I think the shutdown measures so far in the US were warranted based on what we knew in early to mid March. The case for extending them for months is not convincing, and the burden is on those who want WWII mobilization level expansion of government size and power, not the skeptics.

    I think CV will be really awful. I criticized Trump back in January for not stopping all Chinese flights. I dumped most of my stocks in February. But at this point CV is looking like it is not “just the flu” but “just the flu” x 10. That’s not grounds to induce another Great Depression. And it is far from clear even doing that will substantially reduce total mortality.

    I agree with most of what you wrote.

    I think the cell phone tracking study that followed the movement of phones from one spring break beach in Ft. Lauderdale proves how useless a shutdown is in a country that is used to cheap and easy freedom of movement.

    I disagree that CV will be awful. Based on the cellphone movement study, I believe this virus has vastly outraced our ability to track and test for it. This means that the current total number of cases is far, far too low, leading to inflated CFR numbers. I think the Diamond Princess CFR is high because there is no way that the elderly people who passed did not have other health issues.

    I’ve been looking for images and videos of bodies stacked up like cordwood.

    Beyond the hospital in Iran, this was the closest I could find:

    Five military cargo trucks that could be carrying anything. That’s it.

  65. @danand

    "Not paywalled, and updated daily from Johns Hopkins data. Inspired by Burn-Murdoch, “Wade” keeps four interactive graphs updated at his backwards webpage 91-DIVOC. Find the region where you live, toggle between linear and logarithmic scales to see how it is faring compared to the hot-spots in the news. It’s sobering."
     
    The new infection rate looks remarkably low for California. Has California peaked (for this 1st SARS-CoV-2 round) in infection rate? Nothing like what I would have imaged looking forward from 3 week back, when we were 2nd to Washington in positive tests: New York not yet looking too/so bad.

    I think three things may have contributed:

    One, the weather in February was near "Spring like" for most of the state (March has been more typical).
    Two, Stanford University shut down right quick after producing its own test, determining 3 infections, and then promptly closing its doors. This led others (universities, grade schools....) to follow.
    Three, Governor Newsom got the results back from the 3 county surveillance testing, jolting him into action.

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

    I'd say based off his daily TV performances, Newsom the once lightweight, is headed for National office.

    California has been shady and opaque about testing numbers. cca Tuesday we had tested 27k , but with 12k of those still pending results!
    (later it was 68k administered with 48k (of those, afaict) still pending
    https://calmatters.org/health/2020/03/california-coronavirus-test-results-delayed-backlog/)

    So… who the heck knows what’s actually going on. This also means that by the time positives are announced we’re looking days (sometimes over a week) into the past.

    Also, Gov Newsom at today’s press conference announced hospitalization and icu numbers and deltas since yesterday.
    Either he or someone else said that he looks at that data every morning, first thing. Great! Is this data published anywhere? (afaict, no)
    (
    https://www.mercurynews.com/2020/03/28/coronavirus-gov-newsom-says-number-of-patients-in-icus-doubled-overnight/)

    Anyway, i think the spread has just been naturally lower here anyway. Maybe it’s the lower density, maybe it’s that we don’t have real winter.

  66. Anonymous[249] • Disclaimer says:
    @Bostonvegas
    I would like to see a racial,gender and age graph of the death toll....I'm guessing for once it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!

    it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!

    The raw figures will almost certainly show worse outcomes in African American patients, and possibly also in Hispanics.

    African Americans have a higher load of comorbidities, including much higher rates of diabetes than Caucasians.

    Hispanics also show considerably elevated rates of diabetes but despite this show considerable longevity.

  67. Anonymous[367] • Disclaimer says:

    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants. Trump isn’t doing enough. The Trump contemplates a Quarantine. Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.” What do they want the Feds to do? Just give them money and encouragement? What is exactly the right amount of help they want. Who is supposed to determine the exact measure of help? Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

    • Replies: @OscarWildeLoveChild
    How is it that quarantine is good for a city but not for a state, or a people group in a geographical area? Not saying it is pleasant, or fun, but its reality.

    This virus pandemic and panic is going to show how un-unified the cultures within the United States really are, by values, geography and biology. Humans care less about people they do not know, and less about people who are not biologically related to them by any recent measure (last 5,000 years)
    , @Jonathan Mason

    Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.
     
    If Cuomo regards a quarantining of New York as an act of war is he prepared to secede and call out his 15,500 strong National Guard forces to open borders and use his drone aircraft to bomb violators?
    , @Anonymous

    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants. Trump isn’t doing enough. The Trump contemplates a Quarantine. Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.” What do they want the Feds to do?
     
    Cuomo and Democrats want Trump to lose in November.
    , @res

    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants.
     
    Cuomo wants to:
    1. Make Trump look bad.
    2. Increase his own profile on the national stage.
    3. (a distant third if I am any judge) Improve the COVID-19 situation in his state.
  68. @Cortes
    Well said.

    And those heading for the hills (or The Hamptons) might have an appointment there:

    “A merchant in Baghdad sends his servant to the marketplace for provisions. Soon afterwards, the servant comes home white and trembling and tells him that in the marketplace, he was jostled by a woman, whom he recognized as Death, who made a threatening gesture. Borrowing the merchant’s horse, he flees at great speed to Samarra, a distance of about 75 miles (125 km), where he believes Death will not find him. The merchant then goes to the marketplace and finds Death, and asks why she made the threatening gesture to his servant. She replies, “That was not a threatening gesture, it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Baghdad, for I have an appointment with him tonight in Samarra.””

    Cortes, you nailed it.

    Boris Karloff gives an amazing reading of “Appointment at Samarra” in a 1960s vintage movie, incidentally.

  69. @Smithsonian_6
    And in more bad news, it turns out that a ventilator might not do that much good.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/mar/28/coronavirus-intensive-care-uk-patients-50-per-cent-survival-rate

    I read 86 percent of ventilated patients in New Orleans were succumbing along with 70 percent throughout Sweden. I wonder what the mortality rate is for those for whom placement on a ventilator is indicated but not provided.

  70. I’m disappointed in Goh, for a couple of reasons: his code repository is not open.

    His interface is very nicely laid out – I’ll probably pinch bits of the layout, because I have the design flair of a rhinoceros with Tourette’s.

    That said… what he’s done is not SEIR. It’s SEIR-ish.

    The ODEs in Goh’s model are not the ‘canonical’ equations from SEIR, and they’re not what you get from discretising them either.

    Within the github page for the model, the link to the SEIR model is the same one I provided days ago (this one), so there’s no reason for the transitional dynamics to be different due to notation.

    He only has 2 parameters (Tinf and Tinc) and a time-varying Reproduction Number ℜₜ. SEIR has 4 parameters, and the Reproduction Number is a residual.

    Comparing the two (the second line is Goh’s equations):

    If you do the old ‘matching coefficients’ method of comparing the two, you get an important impossibility:

    ① dS/dt: ℜₜ/Tinf = μ/I + β/N
    ② dE/dt: ⓐ ℜₜ/Tinf = β/N; ⓑ Tinc = 1/(μ + a)
    ③ dI/dt: ⓐTinc = 1/a; ⓑ Tinf = 1/(γ + μ)
    ④ dR/dt: Tinf = 1/γ

    Notice that
    • ① and ②ⓐ taken together imply that μ = 0; (once is unfortunate)
    • ②ⓑ and ③ⓐ taken together imply that μ = 0; (twice is coincidence)
    • ④ and ③ⓑ taken together imply that μ = 0; (three times is intentional)
    ④ implies that dR/dt is independent of R (so it’s no longer a differential equation).

    μ = 0 is partly a problem because μ is the death rate in a SEIR model, but it’s also a very important variable in the transitional dynamics – as can be seen by the fact that it is present in all the DEs in the continuous-time model.

    But it’s more important that that, even.

    It appears in the model’s estimate for R[0], and if you set μ = 0 then R[0] is entirely determined by 2 parameters – both of which are already set in Goh’s model.

    If μ = 0, then R[0] = β/γ – your choice of R[0] is even more highly constrained than it is if μ > 0, because setting μ = 0 takes the incubation period (1/a) out of play as shown below –

    Now, look at ②ℜₜ/Tinf = β/N and ④ Tinf = 1/γ

    Do some substitution and you’ll see that implies that ℜₜN = β/γ = R[0].

    Not only does the incubation period no longer matter in determining ℜₜ, nor does the death rate.

    If you then set R[0] (which you shouldn’t) then you only have one remaining free parameter (the relationship between β and γ being fixed)

    Anyhow… that’s not to say that nobody dies in Goh’s model. Deaths are generated by CFR, which is an input into Goh’s model but not to SEIR. If he had given access to the code, it would be possible to say something about precisely how it operates – but it doesn’t operate like a SEIR model.

    Interestingly, he mentions having split I and R – I mentioned just yesterday that splitting I is useful so that there can be different transition probabilities for different ‘classes’ of infected, and those transitions will result in identifiable classes in R that can have different death rates. Doing this properly is what has held me up.

    He’s retained one assumption that is a terrible ‘feature’ of SEIR (and the best one to ditch immediately, which I did).

    In a ‘standard’ SEIR, as S decreases (as people get progressively taken off the board by getting infected then recovering or dying), the proportion of susceptible infected at each iteration, decreases by design. As the uninfected population starts to fall, that means that the absolute number getting infected at each iteration also falls.

    This makes no sense in the unconstrained version: if you have a large and growing stock of asymptomatic infected wandering around, the susceptible cannot know who to avoid.

    Consider ‘Walking Dead‘ where 40% of zombies behave perfectly normally even as they infect you: there will come a point at which there are enough asymp-zombies to comfortably clean up all uninfected in one day’s worth of interactions.

    So it’s far more useful to continue to model the infection rate as a function of contacts per infected times a probability that a contact leads to an infection.

    You still get some built-in slowing of the rate at which the susceptible get infected, because some of the daily interactions are asymp-on-asymp (my new word) or asymp-on-recovered.

    If it turns out that ‘recovered’ ≠ ‘immune’, then only zombie-on-zombie interactions reduce the contagion rate.

    Anyhow, Goh’s tool is really useful for people to experiment with, even though it’s not ‘SEIR’ per se.

    It would be better if it gave users the choice of going with ‘pure’ SEIR, or some variant (that’s another thing I’ve been stuffing around with – as well as a full-blooded Monte Carlo sensitivity analysis so that people can look at deaths as a 3D surface over time, based on plausible ranges of key parameters).

    • LOL: donut
    • Replies: @res

    This makes no sense in the unconstrained version: if you have a large and growing stock of asymptomatic infected wandering around, the susceptible cannot know who to avoid.
     
    But don't the asymptomatic infected (usually) become non-contagious over time?
    , @Buffalo Joe
    Krat, nice piece of work and I quess one reason they don't want to teach algebra is because people could actually understand numbers.
  71. @Anonymous
    The Cuomo press conference yesterday was revealing .... now we know:

    THERE IS NO HIGH DEMAND FOR RESPIRATORS IN NYC.

    He admitted it. He said that it still hasn't happened.

    This reminds of the white helmet stagecraft in Syria.

    Check out Buck Sexton media fave and CIA man with his ICU deluge claim on his twitter feed ...the commenters are calling BULLSHIT.

    212, On Thursday Cuomo said if you had re-though it, probably would not have quarantined (his word ) everyone. And now on to how to fix NY’s “shattered” economy.

  72. @Morton's toes
    The latest from my zip code. I live in a NoCal suburb. All government offices are on skeleton occupation except for the transportation functions. BART is running. The busses are running. Airplanes are flying. The public golf courses are closed. When I went hiking on Friday there were more hikers, bikers, runners, and dogs than I have ever seen before, and I go hiking all the time.

    Nearly every business is open. The only private businesses which I have seen closed are the 24 hour fitness and one starbucks. Besides the closed starbucks I have observed two that are open. A bunch of the restaurants are selling takeout and delivery only. The Walmart and the Safeway shelves are loaded with an occasional empty spot. I usually buy the 18 egg carton and Safeway only had 12 egg cartons the last time I went, for example. The Chinese customers are mostly wearing masks. The white and black peeps are almost all unmasked.

    Have not seen one human in a panic. The most worried person I have seen is my apartment manager who is borderline obese and smokes cigarettes. A couple months ago she was out on the sidewalk smoking when I walked by and I greeted her with "Still haven't quit smoking yet?" Pretty sure she wants to quit smoking but I don't think I am going to mention it to her again any time soon.

    BART is running. The busses are running. Airplanes are flying. The public golf courses are closed.

    Because clearly you’re much much more likely to catch the disease on a golf course than on a crowded bus. Yes, it all makes perfect sense.

    • LOL: ben tillman, Kylie
  73. @chucho
    It's somewhat laughable at this stage of the game that people are still approaching this as an Apollo type of problem-solving event. It's akin to starting the football season with the USC cheerleading squad as your offense and trying to make 1st quarter adjustments. It doesn't really matter if you send Chrissy up the middle or pitch her a lateral toss - she is still going to get her collar bone broken by a charging linebacker.

    The virus is already out there. It will continue to kill people. We will never know which measures worked and which ones did not, because the data is too sparse and poorly collected. Even if a reliable "answer" could be determined, it will already be too late.

    Unless a "return to normalcy" takes place immediately, the economic, social and political consequences of the shutdown will dwarf any public health concern. And unlike the virus, no one will be spared those effects. The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return.

    It doesn’t really matter if you send Chrissy up the middle or pitch her a lateral toss

    Of course it doesn’t matter: Chrissy’s ground game has been hopeless her knee injury – she’s only useful as an additional blocker (because of her size).

    Britney’s the go-to if Dakota is getting good protection from the offensive line, but the right girl to send up the middle is “Other-Britney” (Brittany).

  74. This is all a distraction from HTLV-1!

    In an anomaly like Seattle/Vancouver, there is a huge discrepancy between the sites of our two largest Mardi Gras celebrations. Orleans Parish has ca. 1300 cases, Mobile County only 34.

    And that doesn’t take into consideration NOLA’s suburban parishes. Orleans and Jefferson parishes each have more cases than the entire state of Alabama. Almost a hundred deaths between the two.

    Alabama’s four largest cities are very close in size. Birmingham’s metro is slightly less populous than New Orleans’s, and those of the other three about a third the size. Alabama has more people than Louisiana, though not by much.

    So what’s the difference between the two states? One guess is that Mobile’s parades are mainly for locals, while the Big Easy’s draw tourists from all over the world.

    The case numbers in Louisiana’s other cities aren’t all that dramatic– slightly higher than Alabama’s.

    • Replies: @RAZ
    I have no experience with other Mardi Gras' but have been to New Orleans during it. Wall to wall people lining streets watching floats and trying to catch beads and mostly other crap thrown from the floats. Locals turn out but also lots of tourists. Doubt infected tourists turning out to the same degree in Mobile or other locales.

    And probably no real counterpart to the masses of people partying in the French Quarter in other American cities. At least not Mardi Gras. Chicago did hold their St. Patrick's parade with the active bar scene.

    But was wondering about Rio and Carnivale. That is huge and would be a spreader. Was that held?
    , @S. Anonyia
    Exactly right. Foreign tourists spread it in New Orleans. Germans, Chinese, and South Koreans are all huge fans of the city. I was there at the beginning of the month and half of the white people around had German accents.

    Mobile’s Mardi Gras gets good-sized crowds (less than NOLA of course) but tourists are generally just people from upstate or from Georgia or something. The Florida panhandle beaches (especially the Destin area) have also had a surprisingly low number of cases, given that before the outbreak there were many thousands of old Snowbirds congregating there from the upper Midwest and Canada. It appears that in the early stages of the coronavirus outbreak spread was directly connected to foreign tourists and not interstate travel.

  75. Governor Cuomo admits we’re in civil war conditions, invokes New York state’s right to infect the rest of the nation.

    now way no how will New York do the right thing and quarantine. we’re more important than you flyover losers. we’ll escape to any other state we want whenever we want. we DARE the President to quarantine us.

  76. @RichardTaylor
    The HBD crowd really got it's passion up for this virus. Notice, seeing the country flooded by 3rd worlders didn't do that. They just made dry observations about it.

    But when they might personally might get sick? Oh boy, now it's time to go from observer to advocate!

    “The HBD crowd really got it’s passion up for this virus.”

    no, just the boomers in HBD. like Charles Murray, Steve wouldn’t lift a finger to do anything about the end of America. he’s just here to comment about it with snark. his life has mostly been lived in America 1.0 and man, those were some good times. but he’s semi retired now, and he’s not about to get into any personal trouble trying to do anything about the end of America 1.0. especially don’t talk about the jews who are mainly making it happen, since the jews could shut down this website and end his snark blogging if he talks about them too much.

    but ho boy, this virus comes around and suddenly he’s Mr Action. we need to do this, we need to do that. where was all that fire the last 20 years, when we could have done something to save America?

    • Agree: utu
    • LOL: IHTG
    • Replies: @keypusher
    Yes, your heroic comment-posting on alt-right websites puts Steve to shame.
  77. @Jack D

    Masks don’t need to be worn [by people who] are not in routine contact with sick (or potentially sick people). SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks). Masks should be conserved for healthcare providers
     
    Masks are really magical. When worn by healthcare providers they provide protection to them, but when you wear one, it does nothing, nothing I tell you. They are similar to guns, which only provide protection when worn by officers of the state. Also global warming - when Al Gore flies in his private jet, none is produced but your miserable coach seat creates it. We live surrounded by magic, we are just too blind to see it.

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0195670113000698

    I read through the above article. It tried out 7 types of surgical masks and found that in a particular experiment (live influenza virus was sprayed towards the mask from 70mm distance so just over two feet), the concentration of live influenza virus from outside the mask was cut down by a factor of 1.3-50 depending on the type of mask. A single strap surgical mask had 1.3 factor reduction, all double strap surgical masks had at least a factor 2 reduction or so (factor 2 reduction, then factor 8 reduction, then factor 10 and so on), and one special mask had a factor 50 reduction.

    In other words, masks work!

    Even a simple, close fitting surgical mask should reduce risk dramatically, assuming

    a) you wear it whenever you are in crowds,
    b) after you take it off, you immediately wash your hands
    c) you dont wear it right away again or leave it in the sun before wearing it again.

    I downloaded the pdf file, and will be happy to email it to anyone who wants to have a look.

    • Replies: @Bert
    If people want the pdf file, they can get to it by searching for the title in Google Scholar.
  78. Italy’s been on lockdown for WEEKS, and they’re still losing roughly a thousand people a day, and infections are still climbing. Is there any sign that it’s actually working?

    • Replies: @utu
    Yes, but its is no longer exponential. Daily new deaths in last 7 days seem like a plateau.
  79. @Jack D

    Masks don’t need to be worn [by people who] are not in routine contact with sick (or potentially sick people). SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks). Masks should be conserved for healthcare providers
     
    Masks are really magical. When worn by healthcare providers they provide protection to them, but when you wear one, it does nothing, nothing I tell you. They are similar to guns, which only provide protection when worn by officers of the state. Also global warming - when Al Gore flies in his private jet, none is produced but your miserable coach seat creates it. We live surrounded by magic, we are just too blind to see it.

    Agree Jack.

    The continual lying is annoying.

    Look, there is no doubt, that the big benefit from masks is to cut down transmission–droplets–*from* sick people, nor that health care workers–who are in contact with sick people–need them much much much more than other citizens.

    But … i don’t want to be dutifully practicing my “social distancing” but then when i’m out picking up essential supplies–Diet Mtn Dew and “Cantina Style” chips–in the snack aisle at my local Walmart, turn around and suck in some air–and droplets with the Chinese virus–that some doofus just coughed out.

    The “save ’em for the health care workers” mask shortage, just reinforces what an epic fail our government “public health” bureaucracy is. They had time to give us deplorables lectures that quarantines don’t work and warn us on the perils of “racism!” but no time to figure out they need a stockpile of masks and other medical supplies and a reliable domestic supply chain.

    Perhaps we should fire every last one of those people, and legally mandate that they can not wear masks–ever.

    • Agree: RichardTaylor, wren
  80. @YetAnotherAnon
    In the UK, police are harassing dog walkers who drive into the country to walk their dogs, and stopping motorists to ask if their journey is really necessary.

    Meanwhile, here's 6 hours inbound traffic to Heathrow. Shanghai, Beijing, HK, Lagos, Doha, etc etc

    https://www.airport-london-heathrow.com/lhr-arrivals?tp=12

    All other airports also open, plus the Channel Tunnel.

    I wonder how many police are stopping people at the arrivals gates?

    Anarcho-tyranny.

    Preventing them from UK entry would be racist and zenophobic, and that’s not who the Brits are.

  81. @Bragadocious
    OT: Co-architect of Boston City Hall dies

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/03/28/metro/architect-michael-mckinnell-co-designer-boston-city-hall-dies-84/

    A reminder that one of the worst buildings in America was brought to you by a Brit and a German.

    https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/oC-ZWtb135znJihAqa2eA0NC6lI=/0x0:4200x2800/1200x675/filters:focal(1764x1064:2436x1736)/cdn.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_image/image/62799071/shutterstock_696157549.0.jpg

    Agree. Worst public building in the world!

  82. Anonymous[144] • Disclaimer says:

    They’re doing the co-morbidity scam in NYC.

    It’s easy to inflate the death toll if you simply classify everyone who is already terminal as a casualty of Chi-com Bat Flu.

    This is the perfect hoax environment because of the medical privacy laws.

    Cuomo admission of warehoused ventilators not needed right now was huge. Twitter is calling bullshit on the whole thing now. Yes it’s a nasty virus but it’s been blown completely out of proportion.

    STEVE: Iceland stopped the virus in its tracks …. up there in the cold weather with lots of runny noses etc. Of course no one realizes this fact because good news re Bat Flu is ignored by the media…

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
    The most pernicious use of the co-morbidity scam is with the Diamond Princess, which is still the best data set at this time.

    Go try to find some co-morbidity data for the 70 and 80 year old passengers who passed away.

    You can't. I've been trying and all the stories are mum about co-morbidity. Nope, just some totally healthy 70 and 80 year-olds that were out finishing Ironman tris every weekend.

    Just more signs what an enormous hoax/psyop is being played on us plebes.

  83. @Steve Sailer
    California is very near the bottom of the states in tests per capita, so the infection counts are relatively low.

    But the social distancing has been pretty sizable for the last 10 days or so. Walking around my suburban neighborhood today, it looked like people were now going for 20 feet of distance between passerbys. Traffic is extremely light.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    Fewer traffic and cars must mean an overall improved quality of air and less smog. A family member out there mentioned there’s been a significant decrease of cars on the road, and for the first time, the skies are clearing and the air is a bit more breathable (less smog). Would that be a fairly accurate estimation of SoCal at present?

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Smog hasn't been a big problem in L.A. in this century.
  84. @Cortes
    Well said.

    And those heading for the hills (or The Hamptons) might have an appointment there:

    “A merchant in Baghdad sends his servant to the marketplace for provisions. Soon afterwards, the servant comes home white and trembling and tells him that in the marketplace, he was jostled by a woman, whom he recognized as Death, who made a threatening gesture. Borrowing the merchant’s horse, he flees at great speed to Samarra, a distance of about 75 miles (125 km), where he believes Death will not find him. The merchant then goes to the marketplace and finds Death, and asks why she made the threatening gesture to his servant. She replies, “That was not a threatening gesture, it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Baghdad, for I have an appointment with him tonight in Samarra.””

    David Geffen laughs at you–and at Death!–from his superyacht in the Grenadines.


    “David Geffen’s thought process: ‘Hey you know what, millions are losing their jobs, can’t pay their rent and they’re worried about a deadly pandemic, I bet they’d love to know how I’m doing. Fire up the copter so we can take some more pics of my yacht! They’ll love this!!!’” film producer Robby Starbuck reacted.

    Geffen has since made his Instagram account private.

    https://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/david-geffen-yacht-coronavirus

    It’s that legendary ‘self-awareness’ among the Ruling Class which I’m beginning to wonder isn’t genetic. But I do know one film producer named Robby who isn’t working with Dreamworks next year.

  85. @Steve Sailer
    California is very near the bottom of the states in tests per capita, so the infection counts are relatively low.

    But the social distancing has been pretty sizable for the last 10 days or so. Walking around my suburban neighborhood today, it looked like people were now going for 20 feet of distance between passerbys. Traffic is extremely light.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    If you’ll indulge me …

    • Replies: @Sean
    As attested by folklore and film, the real bird of ill omen isn't a bird. Nightwing (1979): plague from bats. Lifeforce (1985): plague from bats from space.

    https://www.who.int/westernpacific/emergencies/2015-mers-outbreak

    An importation of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) Coronavirus into the Republic of Korea in 2015 led to the largest MERS outbreak outside of the Middle East. By the end of the outbreak, 186 laboratory-confirmed cases (185 in Republic of Korea and 1 in China) and 38 deaths had been recorded.
     

    South Korea had a Camel Flu outbreak in 2015. It was a coronavirus from bats. They were forewarned and a consequence ready as no one else was (South Koreans not bats). Bats are born ready, they can live with with viruses without being affected and they never get cancer. Expert Peter Piot makes this point in relation to coronavirus in his talk

    https://youtu.be/en06PYwvpbI?t=3135

    An indication that the Cochan Ewald theory of infectious disease causing cancer is correct.

  86. @theMann
    Well OBVIOUSLY it makes much more sense to lock down the 97 % of people who will never be at serious threat from the current corona virus mutation, then trying to isolate the 3% of people who might actually be at risk. Not to mention that when you have a "lockdown", but almost everyone still passes through grocery stores, elevators, gas stations, trucking depots, pharmacies, and every other "necessary" business, it aint much of a lockdown. AND, not to mention that prisons and jails, which literally are already on lockdown, are releasing their prisoners to protect them from infection, which of course makes perfect sense.


    Here are the facts, fearmongers:

    1. Most people will never get an active Covid-19 infection.
    2. Most people who do, will have a mild reaction.
    3. Most of the people who do have a severe reaction can already be treated with effective, known means.


    And the Big Enchilada:

    4. Summer comes, the virus goes away. Meanwhile, the worldwide, coordinated, massive increase in Police State measures remain. And that will kill 1000 times as many people as any virus.

    Yes, but then there’s also,

    5. Fall into Winter, the virus returns.

    How will it return? Similar to the 1918 Flu Epidemic, which was worse than the first wave? Or like Passover, the US will be spared the worst of it? If only we had some kind of blood to sprinkle on our collective door of the nation so that COVID-19 would pass over us.

  87. @theMann
    Well OBVIOUSLY it makes much more sense to lock down the 97 % of people who will never be at serious threat from the current corona virus mutation, then trying to isolate the 3% of people who might actually be at risk. Not to mention that when you have a "lockdown", but almost everyone still passes through grocery stores, elevators, gas stations, trucking depots, pharmacies, and every other "necessary" business, it aint much of a lockdown. AND, not to mention that prisons and jails, which literally are already on lockdown, are releasing their prisoners to protect them from infection, which of course makes perfect sense.


    Here are the facts, fearmongers:

    1. Most people will never get an active Covid-19 infection.
    2. Most people who do, will have a mild reaction.
    3. Most of the people who do have a severe reaction can already be treated with effective, known means.


    And the Big Enchilada:

    4. Summer comes, the virus goes away. Meanwhile, the worldwide, coordinated, massive increase in Police State measures remain. And that will kill 1000 times as many people as any virus.

    Well OBVIOUSLY it makes much more sense to lock down the 97 % of people who will never be at serious threat from the current corona virus mutation, then trying to isolate the 3% of people who might actually be at risk.

    That’s a capital idea! Now we only need to know who those people who will never (your words) be at serious threat are. 40% of hospitalizations right now from coronavirus are of patients under 55. (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/18/health/coronavirus-young-people.html) And there still are people in their 20s, 30s, 40s, even children, who are becoming seriously ill, even dying. (Steve’s observation about the degree to which people vainly hope they can predict who does or doesn’t get sick or die from something deserves a fresh mention.)

    Then we need to figure out how to “isolate” that 3% who might be at risk, whatever that may mean. Are we sending them to an island somewhere? How about a prison? If they live in a multigenerational household, say, with millennial boomerang children, or grandchildren what do we do then? Should we spring for an apartment for the kids or put the grandkids in foster care? Oh, and what do we do when those people who are at risk need groceries? Or need to go to a hospital? Assume that, in contrast to the ones living with younger relatives, they don’t have anyone to shop for them.

    Summer comes, the virus goes away.

    There is absolutely nothing, no data or anything else, that supports this. Only an assumption that this virus works like a cold or flu (for that matter, that it works like a seasonal flu: the 1918 Spanish flu struck in the spring and summer). This virus has been spreading among humans, as far as we know, only since November or December of last year. Flu season starts in October. We know nothing about how the seasons might affect this bug. Oh, and even if that is true, summer in the northern hemisphere is winter in the southern hemisphere.

    • Agree: Coemgen, ben tillman
    • Replies: @Lot
    “ Only an assumption that this virus works like a cold or flu”

    15% of colds are caused by corona viruses.
    , @anonymous jew
    There are a couple decent studies showing the R0 factor decreases in warmer wearther/climates, both between countries and within countries. That said, this still appears to spread OK in warm weather. Even if the more dire assessments about the virus are true there's a good chance it will slow down a bit in the summer.
  88. @Bostonvegas
    I would like to see a racial,gender and age graph of the death toll....I'm guessing for once it would be hard to generate the standard women and minorities hardest hit boilerplate!

    Men are 70 percent of ICU cases. Obesity and even being overweight increases risk greatly, too.

    Racial stats for deaths (around here) kind of reflect obesity stats by race….blacks hit hardest.

    • Replies: @danand

    “Men are 70 percent of ICU cases.”
     
    S. Anonyia, you’re right, in Santa Clara County so far roughly 3 out of 4 dead are men:

    https://flic.kr/p/2iJR2fs
    , @Thea
    If caustic feminism and obesity go by the wayside after this clears that would be cause for jubilation.

    This could seriously alter some demographics. Perhaps a shortage of men will lead to more gratitude towards them.
  89. @Morton's toes
    The latest from my zip code. I live in a NoCal suburb. All government offices are on skeleton occupation except for the transportation functions. BART is running. The busses are running. Airplanes are flying. The public golf courses are closed. When I went hiking on Friday there were more hikers, bikers, runners, and dogs than I have ever seen before, and I go hiking all the time.

    Nearly every business is open. The only private businesses which I have seen closed are the 24 hour fitness and one starbucks. Besides the closed starbucks I have observed two that are open. A bunch of the restaurants are selling takeout and delivery only. The Walmart and the Safeway shelves are loaded with an occasional empty spot. I usually buy the 18 egg carton and Safeway only had 12 egg cartons the last time I went, for example. The Chinese customers are mostly wearing masks. The white and black peeps are almost all unmasked.

    Have not seen one human in a panic. The most worried person I have seen is my apartment manager who is borderline obese and smokes cigarettes. A couple months ago she was out on the sidewalk smoking when I walked by and I greeted her with "Still haven't quit smoking yet?" Pretty sure she wants to quit smoking but I don't think I am going to mention it to her again any time soon.

    She’ll probably quit soon 😉

    But seriously, conditions are about the same where I live: most people say they’ve changed their habits, and maybe clean a door knob or two, but for the most part all of the strictures are just too much hassle. They say they’ll follow the rules if they get affected personally. Like so.

  90. @A123

    As with the earlier manuscript, there’s a frustrating lack of detail
    ...
    Hydroxychloroquine/azithromycin therapy lowers viral load rapidly. Figure 1:
     
    If a vaccine is more than a year away, then this combination of already approved drugs is the only game in town to fight WUHAN-19. Both drugs are known to interfere with other types of viruses, so doctors will be willing to try it. Both are very inexpensive generics, so it will not be prohibitively expensive.

    It will be a huge win if the combo can knock the WUHAN-19 virus down enough to significantly reduce the need for hospital admissions. Lowering the "% needing advance care" (a.k.a. "Cutting the Top off the Curve") generates similar benefits to "Flattening the Curve".
    _____

    Two critical questions:

    -1- Is there any news on ramping up production and distribution?

    -2- How common are allergies and/or drug interactions that could prevent this combination from being administered?

    PEACE 😷

    What concerns me is the political opposition to the use of hydroxochloroquine. Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer has threatened to revoke the medical licenses of doctors who prescribe it. Is this just TDS in action?

    • Replies: @Ron Mexico
    Hopefully this will all boomerang back at her. And the "damn" roads still won't be fixed.
    , @ben tillman

    What concerns me is the political opposition to the use of hydroxochloroquine. Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer has threatened to revoke the medical licenses of doctors who prescribe it. Is this just TDS in action?
     
    I think so.
  91. Doris Day – Whatever Will Be Will Be Que Sera Sera

  92. • Replies: @JohnnyWalker123
    Is Tamil Nadu the Florida of India?

    Is Tamil Nadu man comparable to Florida man?
    , @epebble
    Solitary confinement can lead to severe neurosis and depression. If this stay home continues, expect to see more domestic violence, child abuse, alcohol/drug abuse and other pathologies. There was a report from a NY divorce lawyer that her phone has been ringing non-stop after the shut in. President Trump suggested suicides will go up due to economic anxiety if the shut down continues much longer. When researchers analyse this pandemic in the future, they may find out that more people died because of shutdown than due to the virus.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/25/coronavirus-lawyers-expect-a-rise-in-divorces-after-self-isolation.html

    https://www.propublica.org/article/domestic-violence-and-child-abuse-will-rise-during-quarantines-so-will-neglect-at-risk-people-social-workers-say

    https://www.aier.org/article/drugs-suicide-and-crime-empirical-estimates-of-the-human-toll-of-the-shut-down/
  93. @Steve Sailer
    California is very near the bottom of the states in tests per capita, so the infection counts are relatively low.

    But the social distancing has been pretty sizable for the last 10 days or so. Walking around my suburban neighborhood today, it looked like people were now going for 20 feet of distance between passerbys. Traffic is extremely light.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    This Kung Flu panic is all hype. Where are all the dead homeless?

    They have the worst health status, live rough, do not social distance and abuse feud and booze

    Where are all the dead homeless? Dead bodies attract attention.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
    Great points.

    If there were dead vibrant vagrants covering the streets of NYC, Seattle, and SF the NYT would be shrieking for a national crusade not seen since WW2 to honor the 0th Amendment, Amy Harmon, and the memory of Emmett Till.
    , @Neoconned
    Excellent observations Whiskey.

    I knew "it was over" in 2013 when the entire state of Massachusetts shut down and the mega hub of Boston shut down because of 2 retard Muslim kids w ONE stolen pistol, a few firecrackers & a crockpot w gunpowder in it. I know rednecks w bigger arsenals & more explosives as a hobby collection.(tannerite exploding targets, fireworks, bags of smokeless and gunpowder to make "handload" bullets etc)

    This was even though ABC News openly speculated amid FBI/CIA denials that the oldet brother was either a rogue CIA agent or informer....so its not like the fed security types didn't know about these wackos....

    But the cops w no warrant shut the state down & went door to door & marched ppl from their homes w/o a warrant....like the school shooters they know about & track they're"stress testing" to see how far the police state can reach without blowback from John Doe and James Q Redneck....

    What? 800 have died? More Americans die from car wrecks in a month or what? A week?

    They're causing a global depression and martial law thats causing mass layoffsand business failures and loan defaults....im inclined to believe its a bioweapon buti admit i could be wrong...

    Eithet way the Deep State & the chain of command crazies at the CIA are stress testing in anticipation of a Latin American style police state where the military acts as a police force.....

    You have a higher chance of dying in a car wreck or accidental overdose than you do from this oberhyped paranoia....in the 1980s you could buy quarter sticks of dynamite at firework stands....i wonder if we'd shut the country down if ten kids w pistols shot up a few movie theaters and set off fireworks in a public area

    , @Buffalo Joe
    Whiskey, the "unhoused", as they are now called , are a vital resource in California. Hundreds of millions of dollars are spend on them by a well entrenched Government-Homeless complex. San Francisco spent $205 million last year and will double that soon. Hundreds of thousands, yes hundreds of thousands of free hypodremic needles given freely each month. The politicians give the money to the homeless advocates and the advocates make donations back to the politicians, Homelessness is a thriving business in Ca.
  94. @PiltdownMan

    Is Tamil Nadu the Florida of India?

    Is Tamil Nadu man comparable to Florida man?

    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    Are you referring to the meth head who was shot to death by the police in Miami while he was squatting in the street and eating the face off someone else?

    Yes, both are like real-life zombie apocalypse....
  95. @vhrm

    * When infectious virus particles rather than viral RNA are measured, the drop is even more dramatic. If substantiated, this means that after 5 days of hchlor/az therapy, patients are much less contagious. (This is new: to my knowledge, Raoult is the only one routinely performing the cumbersome assay of infectious viruses on clinical samples in a study like this.)
    ...
    * Hchlor/az is unhelpful (or marginally helpful) for critically ill patients.

     

    A possibly similar process that some of you may have the misfortune of being familiar with is a cold sore outbreak on your lips (aka herpes simplex virus 1). If you hit it early with Abreva it goes away quickly and does no damage. The longer it takes to catch it the more damage gets done and after about 2 or 3 days it's too late to intervene and you have to ride out the whole thing.
    Of course, damaged lip cells vs damaged lung cells has a VERY different impact on the rest of the body, but the similarity i'm pointing to is this issue of tissue damage that still is there even after the virus replication is stopped or slowed if you don't stop/slow it soon enough.

    Since this got long and boring here's my first MORE.


    So with cold sore flares the virus that normally lives in some nerves near the mouth with no symptoms starts replicating near the skin after some trigger (illness, sunburn, stress, chapped lips). It then follows the same pattern which is in my observation tingle/swelling -> hard clear blisters -> soft cloudy merged blisters -> injured skin -> healing. Takes a good 2.5 - 3 weeks for me anyway.

    The actual damage is done up front with those blisters. That's when the virus is replicating hard core in your cells and blowing them up. Then the immune system seems to get that under control, but you're still left with an injured lip from those blown up cells and it takes a while for the skin to heal even with no additional damage being done.

    From a treatment point of view, if you notice the thing coming on and hit it with Abreva (doconasol) starting early and often (or possibly with some prescription-in-the-US-but-otc-in-EU antivirals), you nip it in the bud and the whole thing stops overnight often with no visible damage.

    If you hit it in the first several days it still limits the damage some and the eruption is smaller than it would have been, but there's still damage that has to heal. After the first several days though, it doesn't really do anything because all the damage's already been done.

    An interesting thing i've noticed is that the clinical studies of doconasol make it sound like it's barely effective: e.g. reduces duration of symptoms from 5 days to 4 days (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11464183 )

    But if you read the reviews on amazon many of them sound a lot like what i described above (https://smile.amazon.com/Abreva-Docosanol-Treatment-Approved-Blister/dp/B071K8PFHG/ )

    So this also captures that some people clearly have a worse natural course than others (e.g in the study the mean resolution was 5 days, but clearly for many it's longer than that ) AND the fact that you have to stop the virus early before it damages a bunch of cells.

    Your anecdote about abreva mirrors what people say about zinc lozenges and the common cold – mainly that it is effective only if you treat it right away.

    • Replies: @Anon
    Well, of course. Your lungs can't suck on a zinc lozenge.
  96. Steve,

    Here is research showing that wearing masks by sick people is more effective at protecting healthy people than wearing masks by healthy people.

    Respiratory source control using a surgical mask: An in vitro study.
    …With cough, source control (mask or respirator on Source) was statistically superior to mask or unsealed respirator protection on the Receiver (Receiver protection) in all environments. To equal source control during coughing, the N95 respirator must be Vaseline-sealed. During tidal breathing, source control was comparable or superior to mask or respirator protection on the Receiver. Source control via surgical masks may be an important adjunct defense against the spread of respiratory infections. The fit of the mask or respirator, in combination with the airflow patterns in a given setting, are significant contributors to source control efficacy….

    This is a pretty strong research basis for the CDC’s request for healthy people not to wear masks in favor of making them available for the sick. On the other hand, it also supports the idea of universal mask usage in epidemics where people don’t know if they’re sick or not.

    It also supports the idea that, if you think you may have been exposed, you ought to “mask-quarantine” or “maskantine” for a week while you wait for symptoms to show up. Maskantining is important since people are most infectious when their symptoms not begin, not when their symptoms are well-established.

    • Replies: @Anonymous

    Maskantining is important since people are most infectious when their symptoms not begin, not when their symptoms are well-established.
     
    This is absolutely false. Carriers are at their most contagious when they are SYMPTOMATIC, that is, when they are coughing out high viral load particles.
  97. @Yojimbo/Zatoichi
    "Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs."

    And this inflammatory statement is scientifically accurate, or an opinion? Sounds akin to the late '80's dire apocalyptic predictions that "Every other human will be infected with HIV by the year 2000." Did that occur? Of course not. Theoretically, millions of people are potentially in the Grim Reaper's crosshairs with pneumonia, the common flu, the common cold, etc. every single year. The same cohorts, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems are also at risk from these viruses as well. And yet, do millions upon millions pass from pneumonia or the flu? Or even SAARS or Bird Flu? Do they? Still, the mortality rate, both worldwide and in the US, hasn't appeared to move above 1-3%. Technically, if millions upon millions are infected, then millions could pass, but that's not the way the sentence is phrased. In other words, about 97% that are infected with COVID-19 will recover and not die. How good their immune systems are could pay a key factor in their recovery.

    Notice, that the direct relative threat from COVID-19 to China has largely disappeared, and that China, from whence the virus originated, has now gotten the virus under control within their borders. It took about three months to do so and obviously their response to the threat to their nation was on the whole quicker than the US response has been to their own threat. Obviously the Chinese are probably so relieved at this point. After a short while, China can go back to eating their exotic meats, like bat, from their wet markets, give or take a few months out. Hopefully that won't start the thing all over again and at a much faster pace.

    After a short while, China can go back to eating their exotic meats, like bat, from their wet markets, give or take a few months out. Hopefully that won’t start the thing all over again and at a much faster pace.

    Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but I can see no reason why the Chinese can’t do this all over again next year, or whenever it happens. They aren’t changing their habits one iota, and they won’t until and unless we 1) stop buying their crap and 2) stop permitting them entry to our countries. How likely is either, really?

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8163761/Chinese-markets-selling-bats.html

    As exposés go, that one’s fairly tame. It doesn’t show animals crammed into cages so tightly that some asphyxiate, nor does it show them being slaughtered right next to the cages. Both are normal practice. Note: this is current intelligence, right in the middle of the pandemic, just from another city.

    By tying up our economy (not to mention our society) with a place like China, we’ve made a bargain with the Devil. I think we’ve just begun to experience the results.

    • Agree: Yojimbo/Zatoichi
  98. Anonymous[277] • Disclaimer says:

    I agree with Razib – the anti-mask bias is an irrational product of a type of anti-Asian chauvinism that is quite common amongst the American ruling class. Korea and Japan (and, yes, China) provided workable solutions to this crisis; the West (America in particular)–feeling we had nothing to learn from them–refused to listen. The political and medical establishments have blood on their hands.

  99. How many flights and passengers have left Wuhan and arrived in the US since November/December? We are acting like WuFlu just arrived in March. It most likely has been in the US much longer, and nothing in the CDC data is jumping out as abnormal. Nothing like how bad 2017-2018 was. But it seems panic has already set in so here we are.

    Having said that, we really should browbeat more people into wearing masks during the cold and flu season. Works for Asians. Maybe more “cool” famous people need to come out with branded ones and be seen in public with them. People are morons and will follow whatever trend is pushed on them. Do your part celebrities!

  100. Anonymous[270] • Disclaimer says:
    @YetAnotherAnon
    In the UK, police are harassing dog walkers who drive into the country to walk their dogs, and stopping motorists to ask if their journey is really necessary.

    Meanwhile, here's 6 hours inbound traffic to Heathrow. Shanghai, Beijing, HK, Lagos, Doha, etc etc

    https://www.airport-london-heathrow.com/lhr-arrivals?tp=12

    All other airports also open, plus the Channel Tunnel.

    I wonder how many police are stopping people at the arrivals gates?

    Anarcho-tyranny.

    Same in the US – in the midst of S Korean and Italian outbreaks, US did nothing to limit inbound flights from these countries.

  101. Anon[205] • Disclaimer says:
    @A123

    As with the earlier manuscript, there’s a frustrating lack of detail
    ...
    Hydroxychloroquine/azithromycin therapy lowers viral load rapidly. Figure 1:
     
    If a vaccine is more than a year away, then this combination of already approved drugs is the only game in town to fight WUHAN-19. Both drugs are known to interfere with other types of viruses, so doctors will be willing to try it. Both are very inexpensive generics, so it will not be prohibitively expensive.

    It will be a huge win if the combo can knock the WUHAN-19 virus down enough to significantly reduce the need for hospital admissions. Lowering the "% needing advance care" (a.k.a. "Cutting the Top off the Curve") generates similar benefits to "Flattening the Curve".
    _____

    Two critical questions:

    -1- Is there any news on ramping up production and distribution?

    -2- How common are allergies and/or drug interactions that could prevent this combination from being administered?

    PEACE 😷

    Do not support the proposed vaccines for COVID-19 as they contain recycled fetal tissue. Please read the article below for additional information on this evil atrocity.

    Does Moderna’s Heavily Promoted COVID-19 Vaccine Use Aborted Human Fetal Cell Lines?

    “Unfortunately, Moderna, the company that has been recently touted in news headlines for its developing mRNA-1273 vaccine to fight the virus, uses aborted fetal cell lines.

    Debi Vinnedge, Executive Director of Children of God for Life, a prolife organization whose mission is to end the use of aborted fetal material in vaccines and medicines, said her suspicions were raised after checking Moderna’s patents and in particular, the use of the Spike (S) protein.

    The idea behind using this Spike protein in a vaccine with messenger RNA (mRNA) is to teach the patient’s immune system to produce its own protein antibodies to block and destroy the virus so the person will not become infected. Unfortunately, Vinnedge said her heart sank when she discovered that Spike protein was produced using HEK 293 aborted fetal cells.

    “It was detailed in several science publications”, she said. “And in light of the public fear and panic, I did not want to be the bearer of bad news.” Vinnedge said the heavy burden of revealing that knowledge made her dig further into others’ research. That’s when she found another well- known pharmaceutical company had a better solution.

    Enter, Sanofi Pasteur which is using its own recombinant DNA platform to produce a Covid-19 vaccine. According to the Department of HHS Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) reports, Sanofi is using the DNA of the baculovirus expression platform, which is also used in their licensed Flublok Quadrivalent vaccine.

    …Vinnedge said she was particularly annoyed to see a recent article in the Washington Post trying to assert that President Trump’s ban on the use of aborted fetal tissue was blocking important research and treatments for Covid-19 virus.

    “That accusation is laughable at best and nothing more than a political maneuver,” stated Vinnedge. “In fact, we have morally produced treatments for patients who are already infected, notably Hydroxychloroquine or Plaquenil. And there are more promising treatments on the way to prevent infection entirely.”

    https://christiansfortruth.com/does-a-new-highly-anticipated-covid-19-vaccine-use-aborted-human-fetal-cell-lines/

    • Replies: @Jack D
    I hope you are joking but I fear that you are not.

    Yes better for millions to die than to use the cells descended from a fetus that was aborted in 1970s. Fruit of the poisoned tree! This is sheer stupidity like the Negro family that wants royalties because another cell line was taken from their mother's tumor in the 1940s.
    , @HA
    "Do not support the proposed vaccines for COVID-19 as they contain recycled fetal tissue."

    Did you not even read your own link? According to that, the Moderna version is the one derived from HEK 293 cell lines, whereas the Sanofi Pasteur isn't.

    So just use the Sanofi. Problem solved.

    That being said, your link seems shady. It contains outright falsehoods such as this:


    And keep in mind, by the time any COVID-19 vaccine is ready for human use, it will already be obsolete and unnecessary, as the prime infection period will have passed.
     
    We don't know how long immunity to this new virus lasts (in the case of previously known coronaviruses, immunity lasts about a year or two), so there's no way of knowing when a vaccine will be "obsolete and unnecessary.
  102. @JohnnyWalker123
    Is Tamil Nadu the Florida of India?

    Is Tamil Nadu man comparable to Florida man?

    Are you referring to the meth head who was shot to death by the police in Miami while he was squatting in the street and eating the face off someone else?

    Yes, both are like real-life zombie apocalypse….

  103. @Thomas

    Well OBVIOUSLY it makes much more sense to lock down the 97 % of people who will never be at serious threat from the current corona virus mutation, then trying to isolate the 3% of people who might actually be at risk.
     
    That's a capital idea! Now we only need to know who those people who will never (your words) be at serious threat are. 40% of hospitalizations right now from coronavirus are of patients under 55. (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/18/health/coronavirus-young-people.html) And there still are people in their 20s, 30s, 40s, even children, who are becoming seriously ill, even dying. (Steve's observation about the degree to which people vainly hope they can predict who does or doesn't get sick or die from something deserves a fresh mention.)

    Then we need to figure out how to "isolate" that 3% who might be at risk, whatever that may mean. Are we sending them to an island somewhere? How about a prison? If they live in a multigenerational household, say, with millennial boomerang children, or grandchildren what do we do then? Should we spring for an apartment for the kids or put the grandkids in foster care? Oh, and what do we do when those people who are at risk need groceries? Or need to go to a hospital? Assume that, in contrast to the ones living with younger relatives, they don't have anyone to shop for them.


    Summer comes, the virus goes away.
     
    There is absolutely nothing, no data or anything else, that supports this. Only an assumption that this virus works like a cold or flu (for that matter, that it works like a seasonal flu: the 1918 Spanish flu struck in the spring and summer). This virus has been spreading among humans, as far as we know, only since November or December of last year. Flu season starts in October. We know nothing about how the seasons might affect this bug. Oh, and even if that is true, summer in the northern hemisphere is winter in the southern hemisphere.

    “ Only an assumption that this virus works like a cold or flu”

    15% of colds are caused by corona viruses.

  104. @danand

    "Not paywalled, and updated daily from Johns Hopkins data. Inspired by Burn-Murdoch, “Wade” keeps four interactive graphs updated at his backwards webpage 91-DIVOC. Find the region where you live, toggle between linear and logarithmic scales to see how it is faring compared to the hot-spots in the news. It’s sobering."
     
    The new infection rate looks remarkably low for California. Has California peaked (for this 1st SARS-CoV-2 round) in infection rate? Nothing like what I would have imaged looking forward from 3 week back, when we were 2nd to Washington in positive tests: New York not yet looking too/so bad.

    I think three things may have contributed:

    One, the weather in February was near "Spring like" for most of the state (March has been more typical).
    Two, Stanford University shut down right quick after producing its own test, determining 3 infections, and then promptly closing its doors. This led others (universities, grade schools....) to follow.
    Three, Governor Newsom got the results back from the 3 county surveillance testing, jolting him into action.

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

    I'd say based off his daily TV performances, Newsom the once lightweight, is headed for National office.

    The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has advised doctors to only test patients for the coronavirus if a positive result would actually impact their treatment. The department said in an official letter on Thursday that it was “shifting from a strategy of case containment to slowing disease transmission and averting excess morbidity and mortality.” The recommendation signaled a realization that there is little hope of containing the outbreak and came as a result of a growing number of patients and a limited number of tests. The decision could make it difficult to ever accurately determine the number of coronavirus cases in L.A. County, the country’s second-largest municipal health system.

    Read it at Los Angeles Times

    • Replies: @danand

    “The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has advised doctors to only test patients for the coronavirus if a positive result would actually impact their treatment.”
     
    Stan, the restricted testing imposed on the 19th may still be in effect. But here’s an excerpt from County of Los Angeles Public Health from their daily update on the 26th:

    “Unfortunately, we have been expecting this. To the families and loved ones, we are deeply sorry for your loss. This dramatic increase in cases is due in part to increased testing capacity in LA County which is allowing us to identify more positive cases. In order to slow the spread and save lives, all of us must do our part by staying home, adhering to all social distancing measures and caring for each other."
     
    http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus/

    Given last weeks ramp in California’s test capability, and the pro testing rhetoric of Governor Newsom, I’d be at least a little surprised if that “no test” edict was current.

  105. @Yojimbo/Zatoichi
    Fewer traffic and cars must mean an overall improved quality of air and less smog. A family member out there mentioned there's been a significant decrease of cars on the road, and for the first time, the skies are clearing and the air is a bit more breathable (less smog). Would that be a fairly accurate estimation of SoCal at present?

    Smog hasn’t been a big problem in L.A. in this century.

  106. @Wilkey

    What’s the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female? The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?
     
    Because they get it, then spread it to people with underlying conditions. Welcome back from your two month coma. Hell, welcome to life post-1847. Ignaz Semmelweis sends his regards.

    So lock down “people with underlying condition” and the oldies. Lock ’em down, hard core. And loosen restrictions on everyone else. How is that more extreme than what we are already doing? How is that worse for the economy?

  107. UK says:

    Exactly. We know who is vulnerable. They are a tiny fraction of the population. Quarantine them and let everyone else get on with their lives. That would be win win win. Who could possibly object? And why?

    And those who do object…they can self quarantine too…hell, give them some free money…

  108. @MikeatMikedotMike
    "The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down? "


    Because shut up, they explained.

    When you consider the actual nature of the NYC 0 – 17 cohort, “being locked down” is just training for their future careers of being locked up.

  109. @PiltdownMan

    Solitary confinement can lead to severe neurosis and depression. If this stay home continues, expect to see more domestic violence, child abuse, alcohol/drug abuse and other pathologies. There was a report from a NY divorce lawyer that her phone has been ringing non-stop after the shut in. President Trump suggested suicides will go up due to economic anxiety if the shut down continues much longer. When researchers analyse this pandemic in the future, they may find out that more people died because of shutdown than due to the virus.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/25/coronavirus-lawyers-expect-a-rise-in-divorces-after-self-isolation.html

    https://www.propublica.org/article/domestic-violence-and-child-abuse-will-rise-during-quarantines-so-will-neglect-at-risk-people-social-workers-say

    https://www.aier.org/article/drugs-suicide-and-crime-empirical-estimates-of-the-human-toll-of-the-shut-down/

    • Replies: @Neoconned
    Good observations....people forget drugs" suicide and car related incidents are the biggest killers of Americans every yr after self inflicted death like heart disease/smoking etc
  110. @Anonymous
    They're doing the co-morbidity scam in NYC.

    It's easy to inflate the death toll if you simply classify everyone who is already terminal as a casualty of Chi-com Bat Flu.

    This is the perfect hoax environment because of the medical privacy laws.

    Cuomo admission of warehoused ventilators not needed right now was huge. Twitter is calling bullshit on the whole thing now. Yes it's a nasty virus but it's been blown completely out of proportion.

    STEVE: Iceland stopped the virus in its tracks .... up there in the cold weather with lots of runny noses etc. Of course no one realizes this fact because good news re Bat Flu is ignored by the media...

    The most pernicious use of the co-morbidity scam is with the Diamond Princess, which is still the best data set at this time.

    Go try to find some co-morbidity data for the 70 and 80 year old passengers who passed away.

    You can’t. I’ve been trying and all the stories are mum about co-morbidity. Nope, just some totally healthy 70 and 80 year-olds that were out finishing Ironman tris every weekend.

    Just more signs what an enormous hoax/psyop is being played on us plebes.

  111. @Whiskey
    This Kung Flu panic is all hype. Where are all the dead homeless?

    They have the worst health status, live rough, do not social distance and abuse feud and booze

    Where are all the dead homeless? Dead bodies attract attention.

    Great points.

    If there were dead vibrant vagrants covering the streets of NYC, Seattle, and SF the NYT would be shrieking for a national crusade not seen since WW2 to honor the 0th Amendment, Amy Harmon, and the memory of Emmett Till.

  112. @The Germ Theory of Disease
    Yes, that thing is a true crime against humanity.

    On the bright side, it did inspire Jonathan Richman's hilarious song "Government Center," which along with "Pablo Picasso" and the Replacements' O. Henry-esque "Skyway," is one of the three funniest songs in the rock and roll canon.

    On the bright side, it did inspire Jonathan Richman’s hilarious song “Government Center,”

    Jonathan Richman, the Norm Crosby of rock and roll.

    However, GC replaced Scollay Square, which made it into the Kingston Trio’s “M.T.A.” Hit songs about Boston were like Red Sox pennants– one would happen every decade or two. Next up was the Standells’ “Dirty Water”.

    They were from L.A., and the Trio, 2/3 haole Hawaiian, was also based in California. Richman is a native of Greater Boston, with an accent to match, but is no Yankee. He says he is “Russian Jewish in every direction.”

  113. @Enochian
    Italy's been on lockdown for WEEKS, and they're still losing roughly a thousand people a day, and infections are still climbing. Is there any sign that it's actually working?

    Yes, but its is no longer exponential. Daily new deaths in last 7 days seem like a plateau.

    • Replies: @Joe Schmoe

    Daily new deaths in last 7 days seem like a plateau.
     
    Eventually you run out of old sick people.
  114. @Aj7575
    Your anecdote about abreva mirrors what people say about zinc lozenges and the common cold - mainly that it is effective only if you treat it right away.

    Well, of course. Your lungs can’t suck on a zinc lozenge.

  115. @Intelligent Dasein
    Here is the most recent (03/28/2020) log-scale chart, which is updated daily at Wattsupwiththat. The blue zone represents normal seasonal flu deaths. The red zone represents three times the normal monthly total of flu deaths, i.e. the point when hospital load becomes a concern.

    As you can see, the curves of the worst affected countries are all starting to flatten noticeably. This accords with the basic belief that while coronavirus is not nothing, it is very, very far from being apocalyptic.

    https://i2.wp.com/wattsupwiththat.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/corona-deaths-20200328.png?w=721&ssl=1

    “Wait I gotta find a new trend/ cause the line on the graph is low and we can’t have that”

  116. @Steve Sailer
    California is very near the bottom of the states in tests per capita, so the infection counts are relatively low.

    But the social distancing has been pretty sizable for the last 10 days or so. Walking around my suburban neighborhood today, it looked like people were now going for 20 feet of distance between passerbys. Traffic is extremely light.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    Steve, did you see LA County is reporting the number of cases on a city by city basis? https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-03-28/these-l-a-county-communities-have-coronavirus-cases-and-these-dont

    Also, the University of Washington published their projections for each state and the country: https://covid19.healthdata.org/projections. They predict California will peak for resource use on April 24 & the US will have ~81,000 dead by August 3 (California: ~6100 dead).

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Interesting that they are predicting California to have about 8% of the deaths when it has about 12% of the population. That may just be an artifact of California doing little testing.

    Looking at the L.A. county numbers by city, it looks like affluent, mobile, sociable white people are either more infected or more tested than, say, blue collar Mexicans. But we'll see how that changes over time.

    , @Ron Unz

    Also, the University of Washington published their projections for each state and the country: https://covid19.healthdata.org/projections. They predict California will peak for resource use on April 24 & the US will have ~81,000 dead by August 3 (California: ~6100 dead).
     
    Well, they have some fancy Javascript charting system, but I'm *extremely* skeptical about their numbers.

    The California totals seems reasonably plausible given that our state led the nation into lockdown, and that may have largely stopped the spread of the virus. But there's a gigantic outbreak in New York, and apparently large new ones in various other parts of the East and the Midwest.

    Since we have well over 2,000 deaths, we probably have around 2M or so infected, and much of the country isn't under lockdown. So I just don't see why it wouldn't continue to spread close to exponentially.

    Anyway, just keep an eye on New York. I strongly suspect that within another week or so, the daily deaths there will demonstrate that the optimistic UWash projections make absolutely no sense.
    , @Ron Unz
    Actually, I think it's pretty easy to see that the UWash projections for New York don't make any sense...

    NY has already had almost 900 deaths, so assuming 1%, that implies around 90K infections three weeks ago. The doubling-period was probably 3-6 days before the lockdown, and its hard to say how effective its been in such a dense environment. But I'd expect infections are now well over 1M, and they're probably continuing to increase, though at a much slower rate.

    1M infections implies 10K deaths in a fully-functioning heath system. But it also generates perhaps 200K hospitalizations, almost certainly enough to crash the local health system. Once the health system crashes, we're looking at 50K deaths. So I think something like 50K deaths in NY is already "baked into the cake" even if new infections went to zero tomorrow.

    Meanwhile, the UWash people predict *total* NY deaths at 10K to late summer. How does this make any sense?

    Maybe that French miracle drug will cure everyone. Maybe the Venusians will land on earth and save the day. But otherwise I just don't see how the UWash numbers are plausible.
    , @Buffalo Joe
    Anon Anon, Ohio publishes cases by county AND zip code. There is a map at Cleveland.com (Plains Dealer online.)
  117. @AnonAnon
    Steve, did you see LA County is reporting the number of cases on a city by city basis? https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-03-28/these-l-a-county-communities-have-coronavirus-cases-and-these-dont


    Also, the University of Washington published their projections for each state and the country: https://covid19.healthdata.org/projections. They predict California will peak for resource use on April 24 & the US will have ~81,000 dead by August 3 (California: ~6100 dead).

    Interesting that they are predicting California to have about 8% of the deaths when it has about 12% of the population. That may just be an artifact of California doing little testing.

    Looking at the L.A. county numbers by city, it looks like affluent, mobile, sociable white people are either more infected or more tested than, say, blue collar Mexicans. But we’ll see how that changes over time.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    In London the high number of confirmed cases are all in the non British areas of the city, similarly we have seen reports of a high number of Jewish and Muslim deaths. My impression is social distancing is better practised by British people. There might be other issues, perhaps minorities have underlying health issues etc.

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/how-to-understand-and-report-figures-for-covid-19-deaths-

    Good article by British pathologist on the problems with the data.

  118. @S. Anonyia
    Men are 70 percent of ICU cases. Obesity and even being overweight increases risk greatly, too.

    Racial stats for deaths (around here) kind of reflect obesity stats by race....blacks hit hardest.

    “Men are 70 percent of ICU cases.”

    S. Anonyia, you’re right, in Santa Clara County so far roughly 3 out of 4 dead are men:

    808E8829-D9C0-4DA8-BBF7-9344BD45FC17

    • Replies: @RAZ
    If the deaths are skewing men over women, and if the deaths are skewing older over younger, need to account for the fact since men overall die younger than women, the population that much of the deaths are coming from is more female, so if the actual deaths are more from the smaller populated male part, the actual rate of deaths male vs female should be quite higher.
  119. @ben tillman

    In the U.S., the patchwork of state and local social-distancing measures halfheartedly endorsed by President Trump will not flatten the curve.
     
    Ridiculous.

    SARS-CoV-2 [seems to spread] by contact rather than droplets (esp. as pertains to the asymptomatic folks).
     
    Spreads by "contact"? What the hell? How is that supposed to work? It's just absorbed through the skin? And it's pretty damn easy to avoid contact with people in most job situations and financial transactions, so how is this thing going to keep spreading?

    That is the major omission from all the analysis to date and the professionals, the scientists, the epidemiologists, the virologists, none of them can admit that they just do not have a really good grasp about how it is being transmitted so effectively. That they cannot spell out exactly what “by touch” means or explain why masks might be useless is a huge fail for the medical profession.

    A mailman sent an email to This Week in Virology last week asking if he could catch it from the mail or from a mailbox and the “experts” fumbled with the question for 5 minutes producing nothing.

    We can build electric robot cars but we can’t test this shit is a laboratory? Did they close MIT?

    • Agree: ben tillman
    • Replies: @danand

    "Did they close MIT?"
     
    Mr. Rico, I agree with you, it's frustrating concerning lack of information on touch transmission. A least a couple of credible virologist are indicating that direct, or near direct, contact with an infected individual is most likely required for transmission.

    As for MIT, yes they closed it, two weeks ago. A neighbors son, a second year MIT student, is coming out of garage quarantine tomorrow. When his parents went to pick him up from the airport they took two cars, he drove one back home. Not sure if this isolation was more to protect the parents, or their son; mother is an M.D..
    , @Anonymous

    none of them can admit that they just do not have a really good grasp about how it is being transmitted so effectively.
     
    Do we even have a grasp of how well it is transmitted? Is it really transmitted “so effectively”?
  120. @Steve Sailer
    Interesting that they are predicting California to have about 8% of the deaths when it has about 12% of the population. That may just be an artifact of California doing little testing.

    Looking at the L.A. county numbers by city, it looks like affluent, mobile, sociable white people are either more infected or more tested than, say, blue collar Mexicans. But we'll see how that changes over time.

    In London the high number of confirmed cases are all in the non British areas of the city, similarly we have seen reports of a high number of Jewish and Muslim deaths. My impression is social distancing is better practised by British people. There might be other issues, perhaps minorities have underlying health issues etc.

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/how-to-understand-and-report-figures-for-covid-19-deaths-

    Good article by British pathologist on the problems with the data.

    • Replies: @UK
    If you ever spend some time in the private wings of the major teaching hospitals in London you might notice that many of the patients have stereotypically Jewish last names. There are a lot of old rich Jews in London.

    There are also a lot of young ultra-Othodox Jews, though not in those places of course. It seems that both populations are more likely to get ill with Chinavirus.

    (Those wings are sociologically very interesting. Fees can be eye-watering at £20k a night. Most guests are foreign oil money. The doctors are very often the genuine leading experts in their area and also somehow have stereotypically Jewish names. UCLH is a particularly good one to look at. Oddly, the care is essentially the same as the free care but it comes with 3* style accommodation and passable food.)
  121. @Stan
    The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has advised doctors to only test patients for the coronavirus if a positive result would actually impact their treatment. The department said in an official letter on Thursday that it was “shifting from a strategy of case containment to slowing disease transmission and averting excess morbidity and mortality.” The recommendation signaled a realization that there is little hope of containing the outbreak and came as a result of a growing number of patients and a limited number of tests. The decision could make it difficult to ever accurately determine the number of coronavirus cases in L.A. County, the country’s second-largest municipal health system.

    Read it at Los Angeles Times

    “The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has advised doctors to only test patients for the coronavirus if a positive result would actually impact their treatment.”

    Stan, the restricted testing imposed on the 19th may still be in effect. But here’s an excerpt from County of Los Angeles Public Health from their daily update on the 26th:

    “Unfortunately, we have been expecting this. To the families and loved ones, we are deeply sorry for your loss. This dramatic increase in cases is due in part to increased testing capacity in LA County which is allowing us to identify more positive cases. In order to slow the spread and save lives, all of us must do our part by staying home, adhering to all social distancing measures and caring for each other.”

    http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus/

    Given last weeks ramp in California’s test capability, and the pro testing rhetoric of Governor Newsom, I’d be at least a little surprised if that “no test” edict was current.

  122. @Harry Baldwin
    What concerns me is the political opposition to the use of hydroxochloroquine. Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer has threatened to revoke the medical licenses of doctors who prescribe it. Is this just TDS in action?

    Hopefully this will all boomerang back at her. And the “damn” roads still won’t be fixed.

  123. @A123

    My apologies, I meant to click Agree!
     
    FYI: The site appears to allow only one "AGREE/DISAGREE/ETC" per post.

    If you have not used up your allotment, try adding your desired respose. That should also, by rule, eliminate the prior response.

    PEACE 😷

    FYI: The site appears to allow only one “AGREE/DISAGREE/ETC” per post.

    If you have not used up your allotment, try adding your desired respose. That should also, by rule, eliminate the prior response.

    Worked like a charm—thanks!

  124. @S Dash
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0195670113000698

    I read through the above article. It tried out 7 types of surgical masks and found that in a particular experiment (live influenza virus was sprayed towards the mask from 70mm distance so just over two feet), the concentration of live influenza virus from outside the mask was cut down by a factor of 1.3-50 depending on the type of mask. A single strap surgical mask had 1.3 factor reduction, all double strap surgical masks had at least a factor 2 reduction or so (factor 2 reduction, then factor 8 reduction, then factor 10 and so on), and one special mask had a factor 50 reduction.

    In other words, masks work!

    Even a simple, close fitting surgical mask should reduce risk dramatically, assuming

    a) you wear it whenever you are in crowds,
    b) after you take it off, you immediately wash your hands
    c) you dont wear it right away again or leave it in the sun before wearing it again.

    I downloaded the pdf file, and will be happy to email it to anyone who wants to have a look.

    If people want the pdf file, they can get to it by searching for the title in Google Scholar.

  125. @PiltdownMan

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.
     
    If you'll indulge me ...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NuAsGCmp8Jc

    As attested by folklore and film, the real bird of ill omen isn’t a bird. Nightwing (1979): plague from bats. Lifeforce (1985): plague from bats from space.

    https://www.who.int/westernpacific/emergencies/2015-mers-outbreak

    An importation of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) Coronavirus into the Republic of Korea in 2015 led to the largest MERS outbreak outside of the Middle East. By the end of the outbreak, 186 laboratory-confirmed cases (185 in Republic of Korea and 1 in China) and 38 deaths had been recorded.

    South Korea had a Camel Flu outbreak in 2015. It was a coronavirus from bats. They were forewarned and a consequence ready as no one else was (South Koreans not bats). Bats are born ready, they can live with with viruses without being affected and they never get cancer. Expert Peter Piot makes this point in relation to coronavirus in his talk

    An indication that the Cochan Ewald theory of infectious disease causing cancer is correct.

  126. @Intelligent Dasein
    Here is the most recent (03/28/2020) log-scale chart, which is updated daily at Wattsupwiththat. The blue zone represents normal seasonal flu deaths. The red zone represents three times the normal monthly total of flu deaths, i.e. the point when hospital load becomes a concern.

    As you can see, the curves of the worst affected countries are all starting to flatten noticeably. This accords with the basic belief that while coronavirus is not nothing, it is very, very far from being apocalyptic.

    https://i2.wp.com/wattsupwiththat.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/corona-deaths-20200328.png?w=721&ssl=1

    Thanks, ID. Germany noticeably missing in there; I’d like to see theirs added for comparison as well.

    • Replies: @Sean
    The first transmission of COVID-19 in Europe was in Bavaria in late January. They suppressed the outbreak caused, which led to 14 infections and there were no more cases of infection in Germany in the two weeks up to 27th February. The first COVID-19 death in Germany was on 8 March.
  127. @Captain Tripps
    Thanks, ID. Germany noticeably missing in there; I'd like to see theirs added for comparison as well.

    The first transmission of COVID-19 in Europe was in Bavaria in late January. They suppressed the outbreak caused, which led to 14 infections and there were no more cases of infection in Germany in the two weeks up to 27th February. The first COVID-19 death in Germany was on 8 March.

  128. @AnonAnon
    Steve, did you see LA County is reporting the number of cases on a city by city basis? https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-03-28/these-l-a-county-communities-have-coronavirus-cases-and-these-dont


    Also, the University of Washington published their projections for each state and the country: https://covid19.healthdata.org/projections. They predict California will peak for resource use on April 24 & the US will have ~81,000 dead by August 3 (California: ~6100 dead).

    Also, the University of Washington published their projections for each state and the country: https://covid19.healthdata.org/projections. They predict California will peak for resource use on April 24 & the US will have ~81,000 dead by August 3 (California: ~6100 dead).

    Well, they have some fancy Javascript charting system, but I’m *extremely* skeptical about their numbers.

    The California totals seems reasonably plausible given that our state led the nation into lockdown, and that may have largely stopped the spread of the virus. But there’s a gigantic outbreak in New York, and apparently large new ones in various other parts of the East and the Midwest.

    Since we have well over 2,000 deaths, we probably have around 2M or so infected, and much of the country isn’t under lockdown. So I just don’t see why it wouldn’t continue to spread close to exponentially.

    Anyway, just keep an eye on New York. I strongly suspect that within another week or so, the daily deaths there will demonstrate that the optimistic UWash projections make absolutely no sense.

  129. @AnonAnon
    Steve, did you see LA County is reporting the number of cases on a city by city basis? https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-03-28/these-l-a-county-communities-have-coronavirus-cases-and-these-dont


    Also, the University of Washington published their projections for each state and the country: https://covid19.healthdata.org/projections. They predict California will peak for resource use on April 24 & the US will have ~81,000 dead by August 3 (California: ~6100 dead).

    Actually, I think it’s pretty easy to see that the UWash projections for New York don’t make any sense…

    NY has already had almost 900 deaths, so assuming 1%, that implies around 90K infections three weeks ago. The doubling-period was probably 3-6 days before the lockdown, and its hard to say how effective its been in such a dense environment. But I’d expect infections are now well over 1M, and they’re probably continuing to increase, though at a much slower rate.

    1M infections implies 10K deaths in a fully-functioning heath system. But it also generates perhaps 200K hospitalizations, almost certainly enough to crash the local health system. Once the health system crashes, we’re looking at 50K deaths. So I think something like 50K deaths in NY is already “baked into the cake” even if new infections went to zero tomorrow.

    Meanwhile, the UWash people predict *total* NY deaths at 10K to late summer. How does this make any sense?

    Maybe that French miracle drug will cure everyone. Maybe the Venusians will land on earth and save the day. But otherwise I just don’t see how the UWash numbers are plausible.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    You are assuming a crash of the health system, which is a fact not in evidence. Chances are the health system will muddle through more or less. Those whose breathing has not collapsed (80% of those requiring any hospitalization at all) can be accommodated in emergency hospitals set up in convention centers and the like. You are also assuming that the health system actually works wonders -- that it reduces mortality by 80%, which is another fact not in evidence. Only a small fraction of victims require ventilation and an even smaller fraction actually benefit from it. Now when applied to a large # like 1 M infected individuals, this still adds up to 10,000 (mostly but not entirely) sick elderly people who are going to die (a little sooner than they were going to die anyway). This is certainly tragic but it doesn't imply the end of civilization as we know it.
    , @Jonathan Mason

    Once the health system crashes, we’re looking at 50K deaths.
     
    Not necessarily. Americans are a very flexible people and will rise to the occasion, and the federal government has already shown that it is ready to print unlimited money to save America from the virus and to prevent the health system from "crashing".

    You can argue about the pros and cons of the US health care system, but the US health care system is surely in much better condition than the health care system in, say, Iran or Pakistan, or Venezuela, or Nigeria.

    If the worst comes to the worst and a universal state of emergency is declared the US can commandeer cruise ships and use them as floating hospitals, offshore islands can be used as quarantine camps, retired health services personnel can be pressed into service or taken on as volunteers, trained nurses and doctors employed by insurance companies can be pressed into service, and so on.

    And then there are huge numbers of trained medical personnel in the US military, which is a large part of the US economy, who can be deployed in the War on Germs, and millions of soldiers with first aid training who can be used as auxiliaries.

    I think it is fair to say that the US has more resources than any other nation, if it cares to deploy them. Yes, the economy as we have know it might go to hell in a handbasket, but there are no free lunches. The homes people live in will continue to exist, land will continue to exist, food will still be grown, chickens will still lay eggs, bread will be baked, medicines will still be made, alcohol will be brewed, and we will all be in it together.

  130. @George
    "this pandemic is going to be bad. Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs."

    Please correct me if I am wrong. Based on the NYC experience https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-daily-data-summary-deaths.pdf

    From the NYC experience there are 517 deaths attributed to coronavirus. 425 deaths are said to have had underlying conditions while and additional 78 deaths are characterized as underlying conditions pending.

    If the data is considered pristine then a minimum of 425/517 =82% of deaths had underlying conditions. A maximum of (425+78)/517 = 97% of deaths had underlying conditions.

    65 and older were 369 / 517 = 70% of deaths but I think it might turn out that age is not the best predictor as age correlates with serious underlying conditions.

    What's the point of locking down people with no underlying conditions and especially the young and female?

    The NYC experience does not show any deaths in the 0-17 range, why are they being locked down?

    Does the lockdown strategy make sense for young people and even all people without underlying conditions?

    Because they may be related to ones with higher risk. husbands, parents, disabled children.

    I was hoping this would be an awakening for lonely feminists. Being stuck inside all day alone with a roommate must really suck. Maybe a return to young marriages?

  131. @S. Anonyia
    Men are 70 percent of ICU cases. Obesity and even being overweight increases risk greatly, too.

    Racial stats for deaths (around here) kind of reflect obesity stats by race....blacks hit hardest.

    If caustic feminism and obesity go by the wayside after this clears that would be cause for jubilation.

    This could seriously alter some demographics. Perhaps a shortage of men will lead to more gratitude towards them.

    • Replies: @Anonymous

    Perhaps a shortage of men will lead to more gratitude towards them.
     
    It will only lead to greater pressure for more immigration.
  132. @Reg Cæsar
    This is all a distraction from HTLV-1!

    In an anomaly like Seattle/Vancouver, there is a huge discrepancy between the sites of our two largest Mardi Gras celebrations. Orleans Parish has ca. 1300 cases, Mobile County only 34.

    And that doesn't take into consideration NOLA's suburban parishes. Orleans and Jefferson parishes each have more cases than the entire state of Alabama. Almost a hundred deaths between the two.

    Alabama's four largest cities are very close in size. Birmingham's metro is slightly less populous than New Orleans's, and those of the other three about a third the size. Alabama has more people than Louisiana, though not by much.

    So what's the difference between the two states? One guess is that Mobile's parades are mainly for locals, while the Big Easy's draw tourists from all over the world.

    The case numbers in Louisiana's other cities aren't all that dramatic-- slightly higher than Alabama's.

    I have no experience with other Mardi Gras’ but have been to New Orleans during it. Wall to wall people lining streets watching floats and trying to catch beads and mostly other crap thrown from the floats. Locals turn out but also lots of tourists. Doubt infected tourists turning out to the same degree in Mobile or other locales.

    And probably no real counterpart to the masses of people partying in the French Quarter in other American cities. At least not Mardi Gras. Chicago did hold their St. Patrick’s parade with the active bar scene.

    But was wondering about Rio and Carnivale. That is huge and would be a spreader. Was that held?

    • Replies: @Hibernian

    Chicago did hold their St. Patrick’s parade with the active bar scene.
     
    No, we didn't. Cancelled almost at the last minute.
  133. @danand

    “Men are 70 percent of ICU cases.”
     
    S. Anonyia, you’re right, in Santa Clara County so far roughly 3 out of 4 dead are men:

    https://flic.kr/p/2iJR2fs

    If the deaths are skewing men over women, and if the deaths are skewing older over younger, need to account for the fact since men overall die younger than women, the population that much of the deaths are coming from is more female, so if the actual deaths are more from the smaller populated male part, the actual rate of deaths male vs female should be quite higher.

  134. @epebble
    Solitary confinement can lead to severe neurosis and depression. If this stay home continues, expect to see more domestic violence, child abuse, alcohol/drug abuse and other pathologies. There was a report from a NY divorce lawyer that her phone has been ringing non-stop after the shut in. President Trump suggested suicides will go up due to economic anxiety if the shut down continues much longer. When researchers analyse this pandemic in the future, they may find out that more people died because of shutdown than due to the virus.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/25/coronavirus-lawyers-expect-a-rise-in-divorces-after-self-isolation.html

    https://www.propublica.org/article/domestic-violence-and-child-abuse-will-rise-during-quarantines-so-will-neglect-at-risk-people-social-workers-say

    https://www.aier.org/article/drugs-suicide-and-crime-empirical-estimates-of-the-human-toll-of-the-shut-down/

    Good observations….people forget drugs” suicide and car related incidents are the biggest killers of Americans every yr after self inflicted death like heart disease/smoking etc

  135. @Anonymous
    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants. Trump isn’t doing enough. The Trump contemplates a Quarantine. Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.” What do they want the Feds to do? Just give them money and encouragement? What is exactly the right amount of help they want. Who is supposed to determine the exact measure of help? Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

    How is it that quarantine is good for a city but not for a state, or a people group in a geographical area? Not saying it is pleasant, or fun, but its reality.

    This virus pandemic and panic is going to show how un-unified the cultures within the United States really are, by values, geography and biology. Humans care less about people they do not know, and less about people who are not biologically related to them by any recent measure (last 5,000 years)

  136. @UK
    The Atlantic had an article that posited that while men were much more likely to die, "feminism" (yes, not even women) was the real victim of this pandemic.

    “feminism was the real victim of this pandemic.”

    Well every cloud has a silver lining.

  137. @Anon
    Do not support the proposed vaccines for COVID-19 as they contain recycled fetal tissue. Please read the article below for additional information on this evil atrocity.

    Does Moderna’s Heavily Promoted COVID-19 Vaccine Use Aborted Human Fetal Cell Lines?

    "Unfortunately, Moderna, the company that has been recently touted in news headlines for its developing mRNA-1273 vaccine to fight the virus, uses aborted fetal cell lines.

    Debi Vinnedge, Executive Director of Children of God for Life, a prolife organization whose mission is to end the use of aborted fetal material in vaccines and medicines, said her suspicions were raised after checking Moderna’s patents and in particular, the use of the Spike (S) protein.

    The idea behind using this Spike protein in a vaccine with messenger RNA (mRNA) is to teach the patient’s immune system to produce its own protein antibodies to block and destroy the virus so the person will not become infected. Unfortunately, Vinnedge said her heart sank when she discovered that Spike protein was produced using HEK 293 aborted fetal cells.

    “It was detailed in several science publications”, she said. “And in light of the public fear and panic, I did not want to be the bearer of bad news.” Vinnedge said the heavy burden of revealing that knowledge made her dig further into others’ research. That’s when she found another well- known pharmaceutical company had a better solution.

    Enter, Sanofi Pasteur which is using its own recombinant DNA platform to produce a Covid-19 vaccine. According to the Department of HHS Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) reports, Sanofi is using the DNA of the baculovirus expression platform, which is also used in their licensed Flublok Quadrivalent vaccine.

    …Vinnedge said she was particularly annoyed to see a recent article in the Washington Post trying to assert that President Trump’s ban on the use of aborted fetal tissue was blocking important research and treatments for Covid-19 virus.

    “That accusation is laughable at best and nothing more than a political maneuver,” stated Vinnedge. “In fact, we have morally produced treatments for patients who are already infected, notably Hydroxychloroquine or Plaquenil. And there are more promising treatments on the way to prevent infection entirely.”

    https://christiansfortruth.com/does-a-new-highly-anticipated-covid-19-vaccine-use-aborted-human-fetal-cell-lines/
     

    I hope you are joking but I fear that you are not.

    Yes better for millions to die than to use the cells descended from a fetus that was aborted in 1970s. Fruit of the poisoned tree! This is sheer stupidity like the Negro family that wants royalties because another cell line was taken from their mother’s tumor in the 1940s.

    • Agree: Johann Ricke
    • Replies: @Hibernian
    Problem is, it could be an additional incentive, nor for the mothers, but for the doctors and clinics. If it's 50, or even 20, years old, it's fine with me, but how many instances are there of that.
    , @Rich
    Look, you can love abortion more than Bernie loves Fidel, but are you really okay with using dead human babies for your vaccine? Really? And please, don't go on with that 1970s argument that "a fetus isn't human". With all the scientific advances we've made in the study of DNA, it would appear pretty conclusive that the little guy that was inside your aunt back in 73, was genetically human.

    And by that I'm not even arguing that abortion should be illegal, if you guys want to kill your children, you must have good reasons, but do you really want to use their remains for scientific research?
  138. @Whiskey
    This Kung Flu panic is all hype. Where are all the dead homeless?

    They have the worst health status, live rough, do not social distance and abuse feud and booze

    Where are all the dead homeless? Dead bodies attract attention.

    Excellent observations Whiskey.

    I knew “it was over” in 2013 when the entire state of Massachusetts shut down and the mega hub of Boston shut down because of 2 retard Muslim kids w ONE stolen pistol, a few firecrackers & a crockpot w gunpowder in it. I know rednecks w bigger arsenals & more explosives as a hobby collection.(tannerite exploding targets, fireworks, bags of smokeless and gunpowder to make “handload” bullets etc)

    This was even though ABC News openly speculated amid FBI/CIA denials that the oldet brother was either a rogue CIA agent or informer….so its not like the fed security types didn’t know about these wackos….

    But the cops w no warrant shut the state down & went door to door & marched ppl from their homes w/o a warrant….like the school shooters they know about & track they’re”stress testing” to see how far the police state can reach without blowback from John Doe and James Q Redneck….

    What? 800 have died? More Americans die from car wrecks in a month or what? A week?

    They’re causing a global depression and martial law thats causing mass layoffsand business failures and loan defaults….im inclined to believe its a bioweapon buti admit i could be wrong…

    Eithet way the Deep State & the chain of command crazies at the CIA are stress testing in anticipation of a Latin American style police state where the military acts as a police force…..

    You have a higher chance of dying in a car wreck or accidental overdose than you do from this oberhyped paranoia….in the 1980s you could buy quarter sticks of dynamite at firework stands….i wonder if we’d shut the country down if ten kids w pistols shot up a few movie theaters and set off fireworks in a public area

  139. If I had to hazard a guess as who the commenter is on this in depth piece, it would be res or DanHFromMD. I would say whoever wrote it, whether it be them or someone else, probably doesn’t want the blowback from the commenters here who believe Covid-19 is a hoax or is overblown. Clearly, this work undercuts their “arguments”.

    • Replies: @William Badwhite
    Nuh uh. You're wrong.
    , @anon
    "If I had to hazard a guess as who the commenter is on this in depth piece, it would be res or DanHFromMD."

    No, I wrote it. Readers will just have to judge the arguments on their merits, which people seem to be doing ok at. I don't comment too often and am indifferent to any hurt feelings of other commenters. I have more important problems. Think about it, you might find that you do too.
  140. “Scientists” Maybe they should take some time off from politics and Trump hating to read the literature. These are the people we are trusting? That have time off from work to write long Trump screeds rather than do their own life saving work at a time of crisis?

    2005 “Chloroquine is a potent inhibitor of SARS coronavirus infection and spread”

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1232869/

    https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.03.19.997890v1

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1876034116300181

    Also consumption of the polyunsaturated fats, recommended as “heart healthy,” another establishment lie, are in this study what tips the virus from mild to severe disease.
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8674324

  141. If (1) everyone agrees that surgical masks block outgoing droplets and (2) everyone agrees that it is impossible to know who is infected and who isn’t, then why is there any argument over whether a general adoption of mask-wearing in public would reduce the transmission rate?

  142. Here the first paragraph of Raoult’s paper, Results section:

    “A total of 26 patients received hydroxychloroquine and 16 were control patients. Six hydroxychloroquine-treated patients were lost in follow-up during the survey because of early cessation of treatment. Reasons are as follows: three patients were transferred to intensive care unit, including one transferred on day2 post-inclusion who was PCR-positive on day1, one transferred on day3 post-inclusion who was PCR-positive on days1-2 and one transferred on day4 post-inclusion who was PCR-positive on day1 and day3; one patient died on day3 post inclusion and was PCR-negative on day2; one patient decided to leave the hospital on day3 post-inclusion and was PCR-negative on days1-2; finally, one patient stopped the treatment on day3 post-inclusion because of nausea and was PCR-positive on days1-2-3. The results presented here are therefore those of 36 patients (20 hydroxychloroquine-treated patients and 16 control patients). None of the control patients was lost in follow-up.”

    So according to the Good Doctor, 0/16 patients died and 0/16 were intubated without hydroxychloroquine. With HCQ, I see 1/26 dead and 3/26 intubated. Sounds fine.

    • Replies: @anon
    "Here the first paragraph of Raoult’s paper, Results section:"

    Wrong paper, that one dates from March 17. Try the link in the post.
  143. @Ron Unz
    Actually, I think it's pretty easy to see that the UWash projections for New York don't make any sense...

    NY has already had almost 900 deaths, so assuming 1%, that implies around 90K infections three weeks ago. The doubling-period was probably 3-6 days before the lockdown, and its hard to say how effective its been in such a dense environment. But I'd expect infections are now well over 1M, and they're probably continuing to increase, though at a much slower rate.

    1M infections implies 10K deaths in a fully-functioning heath system. But it also generates perhaps 200K hospitalizations, almost certainly enough to crash the local health system. Once the health system crashes, we're looking at 50K deaths. So I think something like 50K deaths in NY is already "baked into the cake" even if new infections went to zero tomorrow.

    Meanwhile, the UWash people predict *total* NY deaths at 10K to late summer. How does this make any sense?

    Maybe that French miracle drug will cure everyone. Maybe the Venusians will land on earth and save the day. But otherwise I just don't see how the UWash numbers are plausible.

    You are assuming a crash of the health system, which is a fact not in evidence. Chances are the health system will muddle through more or less. Those whose breathing has not collapsed (80% of those requiring any hospitalization at all) can be accommodated in emergency hospitals set up in convention centers and the like. You are also assuming that the health system actually works wonders — that it reduces mortality by 80%, which is another fact not in evidence. Only a small fraction of victims require ventilation and an even smaller fraction actually benefit from it. Now when applied to a large # like 1 M infected individuals, this still adds up to 10,000 (mostly but not entirely) sick elderly people who are going to die (a little sooner than they were going to die anyway). This is certainly tragic but it doesn’t imply the end of civilization as we know it.

    • Agree: Johann Ricke
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    what's happening with shootings? Up or down?
  144. In southern Vermont, the inflow of “flatlanders” is obvious. Houses that are always vacant this time of year have cars in their driveways, the grocery store parking lots are dominated by out-of-state plates. Airbnb operators are swamped. I wouldn’t swear to it, but there seems to be a bump in outsiders shopping for second homes. But we’ve also had some warm sunny days lately that would draw them in anyway.

    The normal antipathy Vermonters feel towards second home owners is getting a huge boost. Three or four days ago when Windham county got its first two cases, everyone noted they were from NYC. VTDigger published a front-lashing opinion piece denying the obvious influx of outsiders and ending with this wisdom: “[State Rep.] Birong said he doesn’t think an influx of outsiders, if there is one, is going to raise anyone’s chances of catching COVID-19.” But the hick on the street isn’t buying it.

    Yesterday, breezy, warm and sunny, was the last day of sugering for the year. All the establishments with arches (pans for boiling off sap) were crowded with neighbors drinking and smoking between firings. The last sap is dark and smells a little like lobster. Syrup quality is largely a product of low bacteria count and that’s hard to maintain in an eighty degree, 1.5% sugar solution.

    Today, rainy, social distancing in effect again.

    • Thanks: vhrm
  145. @prime noticer
    "The HBD crowd really got it’s passion up for this virus."

    no, just the boomers in HBD. like Charles Murray, Steve wouldn't lift a finger to do anything about the end of America. he's just here to comment about it with snark. his life has mostly been lived in America 1.0 and man, those were some good times. but he's semi retired now, and he's not about to get into any personal trouble trying to do anything about the end of America 1.0. especially don't talk about the jews who are mainly making it happen, since the jews could shut down this website and end his snark blogging if he talks about them too much.

    but ho boy, this virus comes around and suddenly he's Mr Action. we need to do this, we need to do that. where was all that fire the last 20 years, when we could have done something to save America?

    Yes, your heroic comment-posting on alt-right websites puts Steve to shame.

  146. @Lot
    Agree.

    Here’s what I said to Greg Cochran, who’s on team #ShutItDown

    Greg, you combine:

    an unwarranted optimism about a self-induced depression more severe than the Great Depression (40% decline versus Q4 2019?, 30% drop in the stock market, unemployment more than doubling in less than a month)

    an unwarranted optimism that stay at home orders will be complied with and work

    an unwarranted optimism that the virus won’t still keep spreading or re-emerge because of asymptomatic carriers

    an unwarranted pessimism about the damage CV causes people under 70 without major comorbidities.

    On point 1, currently a number of industries are completely shut down. Zero revenue, continued expenses. They will default on their rent, fire their employees, overwhelm our courts with bankruptcy and debt cases. The shock of the housing bubble collapse caused a deep and long worldwide recession, but was tiny in comparison.

    On point three and four, all we really have is the word of the Chinese government on the effectiveness of extreme shutdowns.

    The Italian shutdown doesn’t seem to have done much. Ohio shut down schools and businesses sooner than its neighbors but has CV rates comparable to them. No mass deaths in Iran despite very weak compliance with shutdown orders.

    I think the shutdown measures so far in the US were warranted based on what we knew in early to mid March. The case for extending them for months is not convincing, and the burden is on those who want WWII mobilization level expansion of government size and power, not the skeptics.

    I think CV will be really awful. I criticized Trump back in January for not stopping all Chinese flights. I dumped most of my stocks in February. But at this point CV is looking like it is not “just the flu” but “just the flu” x 10. That’s not grounds to induce another Great Depression. And it is far from clear even doing that will substantially reduce total mortality.

    On point 1, currently a number of industries are completely shut down. Zero revenue, continued expenses. They will default on their rent…

    And what will the landlords do, evict them? And lease their spaces to whom?

    To a large extent the landlords are going to have to eat their losses. Their tenants are shut down because of some rather unique circumstances – circumstances which hopefully will end soon. They can try to force them to pay, but if they soon find themselves with vacancies it won’t be worth the hassle of recovering a month or two of rent.

    • Replies: @Whiskey
    Except that is not how Landords behaved in the past 2008-2009 Recession. Or any other. Yes they evict non payers. They'd rather have spaces empty (and do and have) than take a below market rent. They get tax write offs and such like for non rented spaces, none for below market. And valuation of their properties are affected by below market rent, not a trivial matter for REITs and the like with thousands of those properties.

    Besides that there is taxes, utilities, other fees that cannot be put off. MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done. We are looking at a minimum of 20% unemployment, which is Great Depression Levels.

    If this lockdown goes on much longer, places like Disney which has furloughed employees without pay at Disneyland, DisneyWorld, Disney Studios etc. will start laying off most of them. At best, when the lockdown ends the park attendance which accounts for most of their revenue and profits will be permanently impacted. People will go out a lot less in crowds out of fear of disease which is new in American behavior. Most restaurants will be reduced to supplying take out delivery for Grubhub and the like. With significant and permanent employment reduction: no more waiters, far less cooks, etc.

    Ford might go out of business over this, with significant impact on employment. We are looking at a permanent reduction in consumer spending, hoarding of food and supplies, massive unemployment, as you cannot shut down a consumer based economy and expect it to start up again. Consumers and small businesses just don't have the reserve cash cushion to go five weeks without pay or customers. A small business owner who goes bankrupt is not just one more unemployed but all his workers, and going bankrupt he cannot start a new business. His credit is now crap, consumer demand in the toilet, and no lending or market demand now exists.

    So you can expect significant push-back on lockdown from: Disney, Ford, GM, Apple, Target, Wal-Mart, ATT-Time-Warner, Universal, all the airlines, hotels, etc. This is why Cuomo has second thoughts. He's not just feeling the heat from the Upstaters, but from big companies who have lots of lobbyists and have no problems finding and funding challengers for him among rivals.
  147. @Anonymous
    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants. Trump isn’t doing enough. The Trump contemplates a Quarantine. Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.” What do they want the Feds to do? Just give them money and encouragement? What is exactly the right amount of help they want. Who is supposed to determine the exact measure of help? Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

    Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.

    If Cuomo regards a quarantining of New York as an act of war is he prepared to secede and call out his 15,500 strong National Guard forces to open borders and use his drone aircraft to bomb violators?

  148. @Reg Cæsar
    This is all a distraction from HTLV-1!

    In an anomaly like Seattle/Vancouver, there is a huge discrepancy between the sites of our two largest Mardi Gras celebrations. Orleans Parish has ca. 1300 cases, Mobile County only 34.

    And that doesn't take into consideration NOLA's suburban parishes. Orleans and Jefferson parishes each have more cases than the entire state of Alabama. Almost a hundred deaths between the two.

    Alabama's four largest cities are very close in size. Birmingham's metro is slightly less populous than New Orleans's, and those of the other three about a third the size. Alabama has more people than Louisiana, though not by much.

    So what's the difference between the two states? One guess is that Mobile's parades are mainly for locals, while the Big Easy's draw tourists from all over the world.

    The case numbers in Louisiana's other cities aren't all that dramatic-- slightly higher than Alabama's.

    Exactly right. Foreign tourists spread it in New Orleans. Germans, Chinese, and South Koreans are all huge fans of the city. I was there at the beginning of the month and half of the white people around had German accents.

    Mobile’s Mardi Gras gets good-sized crowds (less than NOLA of course) but tourists are generally just people from upstate or from Georgia or something. The Florida panhandle beaches (especially the Destin area) have also had a surprisingly low number of cases, given that before the outbreak there were many thousands of old Snowbirds congregating there from the upper Midwest and Canada. It appears that in the early stages of the coronavirus outbreak spread was directly connected to foreign tourists and not interstate travel.

  149. @Ron Unz
    Actually, I think it's pretty easy to see that the UWash projections for New York don't make any sense...

    NY has already had almost 900 deaths, so assuming 1%, that implies around 90K infections three weeks ago. The doubling-period was probably 3-6 days before the lockdown, and its hard to say how effective its been in such a dense environment. But I'd expect infections are now well over 1M, and they're probably continuing to increase, though at a much slower rate.

    1M infections implies 10K deaths in a fully-functioning heath system. But it also generates perhaps 200K hospitalizations, almost certainly enough to crash the local health system. Once the health system crashes, we're looking at 50K deaths. So I think something like 50K deaths in NY is already "baked into the cake" even if new infections went to zero tomorrow.

    Meanwhile, the UWash people predict *total* NY deaths at 10K to late summer. How does this make any sense?

    Maybe that French miracle drug will cure everyone. Maybe the Venusians will land on earth and save the day. But otherwise I just don't see how the UWash numbers are plausible.

    Once the health system crashes, we’re looking at 50K deaths.

    Not necessarily. Americans are a very flexible people and will rise to the occasion, and the federal government has already shown that it is ready to print unlimited money to save America from the virus and to prevent the health system from “crashing”.

    You can argue about the pros and cons of the US health care system, but the US health care system is surely in much better condition than the health care system in, say, Iran or Pakistan, or Venezuela, or Nigeria.

    If the worst comes to the worst and a universal state of emergency is declared the US can commandeer cruise ships and use them as floating hospitals, offshore islands can be used as quarantine camps, retired health services personnel can be pressed into service or taken on as volunteers, trained nurses and doctors employed by insurance companies can be pressed into service, and so on.

    And then there are huge numbers of trained medical personnel in the US military, which is a large part of the US economy, who can be deployed in the War on Germs, and millions of soldiers with first aid training who can be used as auxiliaries.

    I think it is fair to say that the US has more resources than any other nation, if it cares to deploy them. Yes, the economy as we have know it might go to hell in a handbasket, but there are no free lunches. The homes people live in will continue to exist, land will continue to exist, food will still be grown, chickens will still lay eggs, bread will be baked, medicines will still be made, alcohol will be brewed, and we will all be in it together.

    • Replies: @Dacian Julien Soros
    "retired health services personnel can be pressed into service". So true. Those Boomer one-percenters are known for the their self sacrifice. They wuz volunteerin in Africa and West Virginia, but wuz redeploying ASAP to an airborne contagious miasma in Queens or South Central.

    In other news, I have a bridge for sale.
    , @The Wild Geese Howard

    ...we will all be in it together.
     
    Just like the vibrants in France!

    French Official Says Quarantine Should Not Be Enforced In Migrant Areas To Avoid Riots

    https://www.zerohedge.com/political/french-official-says-quarantine-should-not-be-enforced-migrant-areas-avoid-riots

    Look at the solidarity shown in those videos! It's practically the Universal Brotherhood of Man!
  150. @Yojimbo/Zatoichi
    "Millions of people are in the Grim Reaper’s crosshairs."

    And this inflammatory statement is scientifically accurate, or an opinion? Sounds akin to the late '80's dire apocalyptic predictions that "Every other human will be infected with HIV by the year 2000." Did that occur? Of course not. Theoretically, millions of people are potentially in the Grim Reaper's crosshairs with pneumonia, the common flu, the common cold, etc. every single year. The same cohorts, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems are also at risk from these viruses as well. And yet, do millions upon millions pass from pneumonia or the flu? Or even SAARS or Bird Flu? Do they? Still, the mortality rate, both worldwide and in the US, hasn't appeared to move above 1-3%. Technically, if millions upon millions are infected, then millions could pass, but that's not the way the sentence is phrased. In other words, about 97% that are infected with COVID-19 will recover and not die. How good their immune systems are could pay a key factor in their recovery.

    Notice, that the direct relative threat from COVID-19 to China has largely disappeared, and that China, from whence the virus originated, has now gotten the virus under control within their borders. It took about three months to do so and obviously their response to the threat to their nation was on the whole quicker than the US response has been to their own threat. Obviously the Chinese are probably so relieved at this point. After a short while, China can go back to eating their exotic meats, like bat, from their wet markets, give or take a few months out. Hopefully that won't start the thing all over again and at a much faster pace.

    I’d like to understand how the cases in China got to 80K and then just stopped. Presumably people from Wuhan travelled throughout China before the lock down, so shouldn’t other cities in China have experienced NY City-type numbers? Or did China simply stop reporting new cases?

    • Replies: @vhrm
    China locked down Wuhan hard.

    And other places medium hard.

    Transmission slowed down and eventually stopped (or nearly stopped).

    And that's about it.
    how much one can trust the absolute numbers... is unknown, but it certainly appears to have gotten a lot better over there so they're not OBVIOUSLY false.
  151. Of course masks work, they should be the Coronavirus equivalent of the Surgeon General’s “wear a rubber” campaign in the 80s. Sure both are not “100% effective” as detractors like to point out, but something this is 80% effective in minimizing the spread and 80% in minimizing the risk of catching it drastically reduces that number of new infections for each infected person and stop the exponential growth. Nations who remember SARS in East Asia had their act together and are not seeing this exponential growth. The West seems ill prepared both industrially and with public health policy to fight this thing.

    • Replies: @Joe Stalin

    The world faces a shortage of condoms, the world’s largest producer has warned after being shut for more than a week due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    Malaysia’s Karex Bhd, which produces one-fifth of condoms globally, had to close its three factories because of the lockdown enforced by the Malaysian government.

    Over this period, the company would usually make 100 million condoms.

    The factories reopened on Friday after being exempted from the restrictions, but are only operating at half capacity.

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/coronavirus-condom-shortage-factories-closed-a9431386.html
     
  152. Anonymous[147] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous
    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants. Trump isn’t doing enough. The Trump contemplates a Quarantine. Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.” What do they want the Feds to do? Just give them money and encouragement? What is exactly the right amount of help they want. Who is supposed to determine the exact measure of help? Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants. Trump isn’t doing enough. The Trump contemplates a Quarantine. Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.” What do they want the Feds to do?

    Cuomo and Democrats want Trump to lose in November.

  153. @Anonymous
    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants. Trump isn’t doing enough. The Trump contemplates a Quarantine. Then Cuomo calls it “Un-American.” What do they want the Feds to do? Just give them money and encouragement? What is exactly the right amount of help they want. Who is supposed to determine the exact measure of help? Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants.

    Cuomo wants to:
    1. Make Trump look bad.
    2. Increase his own profile on the national stage.
    3. (a distant third if I am any judge) Improve the COVID-19 situation in his state.

    • Replies: @Corvinus
    More like:

    1. Improve the COVID-19 situation in his state.

    2. Take to task Trump for his frequent inconsistency in messaging how he plans to help the states with critical supplies and equipment.

    3. [A distant third] whatever reason you want to insert here.
  154. @Kratoklastes
    I'm disappointed in Goh, for a couple of reasons: his code repository is not open.

    His interface is very nicely laid out - I'll probably pinch bits of the layout, because I have the design flair of a rhinoceros with Tourette's.

    That said... what he's done is not SEIR. It's SEIR-ish.

    The ODEs in Goh's model are not the 'canonical' equations from SEIR, and they're not what you get from discretising them either.

    Within the github page for the model, the link to the SEIR model is the same one I provided days ago (this one), so there's no reason for the transitional dynamics to be different due to notation.

    He only has 2 parameters (Tinf and Tinc) and a time-varying Reproduction Number ℜₜ. SEIR has 4 parameters, and the Reproduction Number is a residual.

    Comparing the two (the second line is Goh's equations):

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/h2gilv709n95blb/SEIRvGoh.png?dl=1

    If you do the old 'matching coefficients' method of comparing the two, you get an important impossibility:

    ① dS/dt: ℜₜ/Tinf = μ/I + β/N
    ② dE/dt: ⓐ ℜₜ/Tinf = β/N; ⓑ Tinc = 1/(μ + a)
    ③ dI/dt: ⓐTinc = 1/a; ⓑ Tinf = 1/(γ + μ)
    ④ dR/dt: Tinf = 1/γ

    Notice that
    • ① and ②ⓐ taken together imply that μ = 0; (once is unfortunate)
    • ②ⓑ and ③ⓐ taken together imply that μ = 0; (twice is coincidence)
    • ④ and ③ⓑ taken together imply that μ = 0; (three times is intentional)
    ④ implies that dR/dt is independent of R (so it's no longer a differential equation).

    μ = 0 is partly a problem because μ is the death rate in a SEIR model, but it's also a very important variable in the transitional dynamics - as can be seen by the fact that it is present in all the DEs in the continuous-time model.

    But it's more important that that, even.

    It appears in the model's estimate for R[0], and if you set μ = 0 then R[0] is entirely determined by 2 parameters - both of which are already set in Goh's model.

    If μ = 0, then R[0] = β/γ - your choice of R[0] is even more highly constrained than it is if μ > 0, because setting μ = 0 takes the incubation period (1/a) out of play as shown below -

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/sky7h8bvl5b63oc/R0_SEIR.png?dl=1

    Now, look at ②ℜₜ/Tinf = β/N and ④ Tinf = 1/γ

    Do some substitution and you'll see that implies that ℜₜN = β/γ = R[0].

    Not only does the incubation period no longer matter in determining ℜₜ, nor does the death rate.

    If you then set R[0] (which you shouldn't) then you only have one remaining free parameter (the relationship between β and γ being fixed)

    Anyhow... that's not to say that nobody dies in Goh's model. Deaths are generated by CFR, which is an input into Goh's model but not to SEIR. If he had given access to the code, it would be possible to say something about precisely how it operates - but it doesn't operate like a SEIR model.

    Interestingly, he mentions having split I and R - I mentioned just yesterday that splitting I is useful so that there can be different transition probabilities for different 'classes' of infected, and those transitions will result in identifiable classes in R that can have different death rates. Doing this properly is what has held me up.

    He's retained one assumption that is a terrible 'feature' of SEIR (and the best one to ditch immediately, which I did).

    In a 'standard' SEIR, as S decreases (as people get progressively taken off the board by getting infected then recovering or dying), the proportion of susceptible infected at each iteration, decreases by design. As the uninfected population starts to fall, that means that the absolute number getting infected at each iteration also falls.

    This makes no sense in the unconstrained version: if you have a large and growing stock of asymptomatic infected wandering around, the susceptible cannot know who to avoid.

    Consider 'Walking Dead' where 40% of zombies behave perfectly normally even as they infect you: there will come a point at which there are enough asymp-zombies to comfortably clean up all uninfected in one day's worth of interactions.

    So it's far more useful to continue to model the infection rate as a function of contacts per infected times a probability that a contact leads to an infection.

    You still get some built-in slowing of the rate at which the susceptible get infected, because some of the daily interactions are asymp-on-asymp (my new word) or asymp-on-recovered.

    If it turns out that 'recovered' ≠ 'immune', then only zombie-on-zombie interactions reduce the contagion rate.

    Anyhow, Goh's tool is really useful for people to experiment with, even though it's not 'SEIR' per se.

    It would be better if it gave users the choice of going with 'pure' SEIR, or some variant (that's another thing I've been stuffing around with - as well as a full-blooded Monte Carlo sensitivity analysis so that people can look at deaths as a 3D surface over time, based on plausible ranges of key parameters).

    This makes no sense in the unconstrained version: if you have a large and growing stock of asymptomatic infected wandering around, the susceptible cannot know who to avoid.

    But don’t the asymptomatic infected (usually) become non-contagious over time?

    • Replies: @Kratoklastes
    Yep - everyone who gets infected becomes non-contagious after some period.

    Anyone in E either becomes Infectious, or dies - it's possible to die before you become infectious. Once you're Exposed you have the thing, but it's 'incubating': the incubation period is the period during which you're not Infectious, which doesn't necessarily mean you can't die from the infection.

    Anyone in I either recovers, dies, or they stop being contagious (and they usually don't go back to being being susceptible).

    There can also be an interval between the Infectious period and Recovery, though. I think of this as the 'Missing Compartment' in SEIR: why it matters will become clear if I pull my finger out and get my model webfacing.

    This is what worried me when I looked at the versions of the equations embedded in Goh's model. Taking each in turn -

    dS/dt (the change in the total number of Suceptible per unit time) reduces S in each period, as people get Exposed (because once exposed they go on to become Infected - whereupon they either Recover or die).

    The reduction in S happens at a rate that is a constant proportion of I/N (the population infection rate) because of the constraints between R[0], γ and β in SEIR when μ = 0.

    When μ = 0, R[0] = β/γ and ℜₜ = ℜ[0]/N = β/(γN).

    This means that the rate at which S falls per unit time ( ℜₜ/Tinf×I in Goh's notation) is equal to β×I/N - which is identical to a standard SEIR if the death rate is set to zero.

    I and N are both functions of time, so I/N is not a constant.

    I has its own dynamics - given by dI/dt - to be discussed later.

    N is also time-varying, but its dynamics are simple: it declines 1:1 with the number of deaths, so in the normal SEIR (assuming no birth rates) dN/dt = -μI.

    I'm guessing that Goh's used CFR to get his impact on N, but that's not a good idea because all the estimates of CFR are based on very biased samples for C (cases) which overstate CFR. Assuming C is the same as the I in SEIR, is a terrible idea - one that you might expect from a CompSci person (see the CODa afer the MORE).

    Knowing dN/dt and dI/dt, there is an analytical solution for d(I/N)/dt, which affects the transition equations for S and E. (This is true of all SEIR models).


    dE/dt (the change in the total number of Eposed per unit time)
    • increases E by (β×I/N) × S - as per SEIR, which is offset by those who transition to Infectious (at a rate of 1/Tinc in Goh's notation, a in the 'standard' SEIR).

    Goh's formulation doesn't take any dead Exposed off the board, which is not right - in theory, a person can die before they become infectious.

    ③ dI/dt (the change in the total number of Infectious per unit time) only reduces I by those who Recover (at a rate of 1/Tinf in Goh's notation, γ in the 'standard' SEIR). It doesn't take any dead Infectious off the board, which is not right.

    Likewise, his equation for Recovered increases Recovered in each period by "Infectious who have become non-contagious"; it doesn't account for Infectious who died.

    It's as if Goh's tried to 'fix' some of the weird death-rate assumptions built into standard SEIR - which is fair enough, because the core assumption is pretty dumb.

    The standard SEIR equations assume that a small proportion (μ) of all 'compartments' die each period.

    "Just clip μ% off the top", rather than putting the dead in the right buckets (E and I). So in addition to any other dynamic, each equation has a deduction of μ times whatever the dependent variable is (e.g., dS/dt has a -μS term; dE/dt has -μE; dI/dt has -μI and dR/dt has -μR).

    Doing is this way is a naïve way to model the fact that the population falls by μ% (i.e., the death rate is a population-wide death rate).

    That's not a very sensible assumption: it makes no sense for 'Susceptible' people who haven't been exposed, to die of the disease, nor does it make sense for 'Recovered' people to die of the disease.

    If it was up to me, I would have a different 'death rate' for each compartment (and for Recovered and Susceptible it would revert to the population-wide death rate for 'representative' people) - but that would make it a 'custom' SEIR, which is fair enough so long as it's fully disclosed.

    .

    There is a lot of data being produced, and a lot of model results being chucked around with the level of authority always associated with the medical profession - who seldom caveat any statement that they make (mostly because they are fucking hopeless at UQ - uncertainty quantification).

    The whole paradigm reminds me of climate models (another absolute shitshow of poor technique and over-specified models that are tweaked into submission), but getting more eyes on it is a good thing.

    There is far more access to their research output now, than there was in the time of SARS (or even of MERS), so it's my hope that there will be a 'Lucas Critique' kind of moment in their discipline, like there was in quantitative economics in the late 1970s - which cleaned up quant economics dramatically. So much so that most of the critiques that you read about quant economics, are regurgitations of Lucas-style problems: very few of them have been relevant since the nid-80s (there are still plenty of shit MBA-having 'quant economists' around, but they're not representative of the discipline).


    CODA

    This reinforces my experience about the difference between CompSci people (like Goh) and people from disciplinary quant.

    CompSci people can convert a set of equations into code reasonably readily, but they have almost no idea about what the equations mean, where best to apply important transitional dynamics (like deaths, in this instance), or what cross-equation constraints are violated when a specific parameter is imposed (or swapped out for some other thing, like R[0]).

    I''ve had a bug up my ass about this for two decades - it was bad enough when non-finance quants started arbitraging across to quant finance, but it really got bad when almost all quant moved from the individual quant's desktop to a webGUI stuck on top of a database.

    At that point managements thought it sensible to get normal coders into the mix, because they're relatively cheap.

    This was a foreseeable problem when in late 2001 I was responsible (from the analysts side, and overall) for a project to completely revamp a quant back-end for equities and managed fund analysis.

    The coders thought they knew what was being asked of them by the analysts. Converting a formula to code and pointing it at the right data... piece of piss.

    Piece of piss unless there's a problem, and then nobody knows what caused the problem because they're talking at cross purposes.

    When the output produced differed from what was expected, the analysts could not track down the cause: they only knew that the numbers they got from R/Excel/whatever were not the same as what was coming our of 'my' much-vaunted new backend.

    Turned out that the coders hadn't realised that variables have very precise names for a reason (e.g., some calculations that required NTA, instead used a data column whose column code translated to "Net Assets", not "Net Tangible Assets". Others (done by a different guy) used the correct definition. Still others used Net Asset Value).

    In the end I wound up sitting with the longest-serving coder on the team (also the most diligent men coder I have ever met, but who I could not get allocated to my team), and we spent 36 hours straight one long weekend going over every calculation, working out precisely which column of which data table it was referencing, and checking that the column definition was precisely what was intended.

    We came in on the Tuesday knowing we had fixed everything, and announced it in the morning meeting. The analysts - skeptical cunts, just like their boss - started checking output and knew within ten minute we weren't bullshitting.

    It was legen.... wait for it ..... dary.

    Anyhow... point is,

    In general, CompSci guys don't know the model and aren't taught to be all that interested in learning about it (because so much of their stuff is piecework and/or short-term contract gigs).

    Disciplinary quants are better, but only know things to look for that they encountered in their own discipline (so they are AWFUL on UQ if they come from disciplines where the data has very tight distributions, like Engineering or Physics).

    And as I said at the start of this hysteria, medical quants are among the worst, because they are protected by the halo effect afforded to the entire profession, and they're mostly dealing with innumerates (most doctors are smart people, but are shockingly bad at statistics, for example).
  155. @Jonathan Mason

    Once the health system crashes, we’re looking at 50K deaths.
     
    Not necessarily. Americans are a very flexible people and will rise to the occasion, and the federal government has already shown that it is ready to print unlimited money to save America from the virus and to prevent the health system from "crashing".

    You can argue about the pros and cons of the US health care system, but the US health care system is surely in much better condition than the health care system in, say, Iran or Pakistan, or Venezuela, or Nigeria.

    If the worst comes to the worst and a universal state of emergency is declared the US can commandeer cruise ships and use them as floating hospitals, offshore islands can be used as quarantine camps, retired health services personnel can be pressed into service or taken on as volunteers, trained nurses and doctors employed by insurance companies can be pressed into service, and so on.

    And then there are huge numbers of trained medical personnel in the US military, which is a large part of the US economy, who can be deployed in the War on Germs, and millions of soldiers with first aid training who can be used as auxiliaries.

    I think it is fair to say that the US has more resources than any other nation, if it cares to deploy them. Yes, the economy as we have know it might go to hell in a handbasket, but there are no free lunches. The homes people live in will continue to exist, land will continue to exist, food will still be grown, chickens will still lay eggs, bread will be baked, medicines will still be made, alcohol will be brewed, and we will all be in it together.

    “retired health services personnel can be pressed into service”. So true. Those Boomer one-percenters are known for the their self sacrifice. They wuz volunteerin in Africa and West Virginia, but wuz redeploying ASAP to an airborne contagious miasma in Queens or South Central.

    In other news, I have a bridge for sale.

  156. @Corvinus
    If I had to hazard a guess as who the commenter is on this in depth piece, it would be res or DanHFromMD. I would say whoever wrote it, whether it be them or someone else, probably doesn’t want the blowback from the commenters here who believe Covid-19 is a hoax or is overblown. Clearly, this work undercuts their “arguments”.

    Nuh uh. You’re wrong.

    • Replies: @Corvinus
    Why are you mad, bro?
  157. The

    interactive model by Gabriel Goh

    needs to be adjusted with figures relevant to the population and the condition.

    It’s highly unlikely it can be used accurately for a geography as large and diverse as the US, but if applied on a state-by-state basis with infection-data specific to COVID-19 then it’s more reliable. I’d recommend adjusting its numbers with infection-details specific to COVID-19 and the population of S.California to get a good picture of what we can expect.

    Baring large-scale epidemiological stats, when we gauge how bad this is going to be, it’s going to come down to: how many patients require ventilator support?

    This turns out to be a great resource: https://www.sccm.org/Blog/March-2020/United-States-Resource-Availability-for-COVID-19

    That question is modified by: where, when, for how long?

    Scaring people with the millions who will get the infection succeeds at: scaring people

    Actionable questions that maximize our collective agency are:

    How many infections turn into hospitalizations?
    How many hospitalizations turn into ICU admissions?
    How many ICU admissions require ventilator support?

    From there: how many ventilators -can- we have? Not “do”, “can”. This is modified by the ability to man them with trained staff, so there’s a maximum absorption.

    From there: how can we mobilize now to maximize supply and channel demand for ventilators over both time and geography so that everyone who needs a ventilator, gets one?

    Those are useful discussions that can turn navel-gazing and fear-mongering into life-saving action.

  158. @Sebastian Hawks
    Of course masks work, they should be the Coronavirus equivalent of the Surgeon General's "wear a rubber" campaign in the 80s. Sure both are not "100% effective" as detractors like to point out, but something this is 80% effective in minimizing the spread and 80% in minimizing the risk of catching it drastically reduces that number of new infections for each infected person and stop the exponential growth. Nations who remember SARS in East Asia had their act together and are not seeing this exponential growth. The West seems ill prepared both industrially and with public health policy to fight this thing.

    The world faces a shortage of condoms, the world’s largest producer has warned after being shut for more than a week due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    Malaysia’s Karex Bhd, which produces one-fifth of condoms globally, had to close its three factories because of the lockdown enforced by the Malaysian government.

    Over this period, the company would usually make 100 million condoms.

    The factories reopened on Friday after being exempted from the restrictions, but are only operating at half capacity.

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/coronavirus-condom-shortage-factories-closed-a9431386.html

  159. @res

    I am at a loss as to what Cuomo wants.
     
    Cuomo wants to:
    1. Make Trump look bad.
    2. Increase his own profile on the national stage.
    3. (a distant third if I am any judge) Improve the COVID-19 situation in his state.

    More like:

    1. Improve the COVID-19 situation in his state.

    2. Take to task Trump for his frequent inconsistency in messaging how he plans to help the states with critical supplies and equipment.

    3. [A distant third] whatever reason you want to insert here.

  160. @William Badwhite
    Nuh uh. You're wrong.

    Why are you mad, bro?

    • Replies: @William Badwhite

    Why are you mad, bro?
     
    No, you are failing to notice your own biases and misperceptions. Fake news on your part Corvirus.
  161. @Kratoklastes
    I'm disappointed in Goh, for a couple of reasons: his code repository is not open.

    His interface is very nicely laid out - I'll probably pinch bits of the layout, because I have the design flair of a rhinoceros with Tourette's.

    That said... what he's done is not SEIR. It's SEIR-ish.

    The ODEs in Goh's model are not the 'canonical' equations from SEIR, and they're not what you get from discretising them either.

    Within the github page for the model, the link to the SEIR model is the same one I provided days ago (this one), so there's no reason for the transitional dynamics to be different due to notation.

    He only has 2 parameters (Tinf and Tinc) and a time-varying Reproduction Number ℜₜ. SEIR has 4 parameters, and the Reproduction Number is a residual.

    Comparing the two (the second line is Goh's equations):

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/h2gilv709n95blb/SEIRvGoh.png?dl=1

    If you do the old 'matching coefficients' method of comparing the two, you get an important impossibility:

    ① dS/dt: ℜₜ/Tinf = μ/I + β/N
    ② dE/dt: ⓐ ℜₜ/Tinf = β/N; ⓑ Tinc = 1/(μ + a)
    ③ dI/dt: ⓐTinc = 1/a; ⓑ Tinf = 1/(γ + μ)
    ④ dR/dt: Tinf = 1/γ

    Notice that
    • ① and ②ⓐ taken together imply that μ = 0; (once is unfortunate)
    • ②ⓑ and ③ⓐ taken together imply that μ = 0; (twice is coincidence)
    • ④ and ③ⓑ taken together imply that μ = 0; (three times is intentional)
    ④ implies that dR/dt is independent of R (so it's no longer a differential equation).

    μ = 0 is partly a problem because μ is the death rate in a SEIR model, but it's also a very important variable in the transitional dynamics - as can be seen by the fact that it is present in all the DEs in the continuous-time model.

    But it's more important that that, even.

    It appears in the model's estimate for R[0], and if you set μ = 0 then R[0] is entirely determined by 2 parameters - both of which are already set in Goh's model.

    If μ = 0, then R[0] = β/γ - your choice of R[0] is even more highly constrained than it is if μ > 0, because setting μ = 0 takes the incubation period (1/a) out of play as shown below -

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/sky7h8bvl5b63oc/R0_SEIR.png?dl=1

    Now, look at ②ℜₜ/Tinf = β/N and ④ Tinf = 1/γ

    Do some substitution and you'll see that implies that ℜₜN = β/γ = R[0].

    Not only does the incubation period no longer matter in determining ℜₜ, nor does the death rate.

    If you then set R[0] (which you shouldn't) then you only have one remaining free parameter (the relationship between β and γ being fixed)

    Anyhow... that's not to say that nobody dies in Goh's model. Deaths are generated by CFR, which is an input into Goh's model but not to SEIR. If he had given access to the code, it would be possible to say something about precisely how it operates - but it doesn't operate like a SEIR model.

    Interestingly, he mentions having split I and R - I mentioned just yesterday that splitting I is useful so that there can be different transition probabilities for different 'classes' of infected, and those transitions will result in identifiable classes in R that can have different death rates. Doing this properly is what has held me up.

    He's retained one assumption that is a terrible 'feature' of SEIR (and the best one to ditch immediately, which I did).

    In a 'standard' SEIR, as S decreases (as people get progressively taken off the board by getting infected then recovering or dying), the proportion of susceptible infected at each iteration, decreases by design. As the uninfected population starts to fall, that means that the absolute number getting infected at each iteration also falls.

    This makes no sense in the unconstrained version: if you have a large and growing stock of asymptomatic infected wandering around, the susceptible cannot know who to avoid.

    Consider 'Walking Dead' where 40% of zombies behave perfectly normally even as they infect you: there will come a point at which there are enough asymp-zombies to comfortably clean up all uninfected in one day's worth of interactions.

    So it's far more useful to continue to model the infection rate as a function of contacts per infected times a probability that a contact leads to an infection.

    You still get some built-in slowing of the rate at which the susceptible get infected, because some of the daily interactions are asymp-on-asymp (my new word) or asymp-on-recovered.

    If it turns out that 'recovered' ≠ 'immune', then only zombie-on-zombie interactions reduce the contagion rate.

    Anyhow, Goh's tool is really useful for people to experiment with, even though it's not 'SEIR' per se.

    It would be better if it gave users the choice of going with 'pure' SEIR, or some variant (that's another thing I've been stuffing around with - as well as a full-blooded Monte Carlo sensitivity analysis so that people can look at deaths as a 3D surface over time, based on plausible ranges of key parameters).

    Krat, nice piece of work and I quess one reason they don’t want to teach algebra is because people could actually understand numbers.

  162. @Anon
    Do not support the proposed vaccines for COVID-19 as they contain recycled fetal tissue. Please read the article below for additional information on this evil atrocity.

    Does Moderna’s Heavily Promoted COVID-19 Vaccine Use Aborted Human Fetal Cell Lines?

    "Unfortunately, Moderna, the company that has been recently touted in news headlines for its developing mRNA-1273 vaccine to fight the virus, uses aborted fetal cell lines.

    Debi Vinnedge, Executive Director of Children of God for Life, a prolife organization whose mission is to end the use of aborted fetal material in vaccines and medicines, said her suspicions were raised after checking Moderna’s patents and in particular, the use of the Spike (S) protein.

    The idea behind using this Spike protein in a vaccine with messenger RNA (mRNA) is to teach the patient’s immune system to produce its own protein antibodies to block and destroy the virus so the person will not become infected. Unfortunately, Vinnedge said her heart sank when she discovered that Spike protein was produced using HEK 293 aborted fetal cells.

    “It was detailed in several science publications”, she said. “And in light of the public fear and panic, I did not want to be the bearer of bad news.” Vinnedge said the heavy burden of revealing that knowledge made her dig further into others’ research. That’s when she found another well- known pharmaceutical company had a better solution.

    Enter, Sanofi Pasteur which is using its own recombinant DNA platform to produce a Covid-19 vaccine. According to the Department of HHS Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) reports, Sanofi is using the DNA of the baculovirus expression platform, which is also used in their licensed Flublok Quadrivalent vaccine.

    …Vinnedge said she was particularly annoyed to see a recent article in the Washington Post trying to assert that President Trump’s ban on the use of aborted fetal tissue was blocking important research and treatments for Covid-19 virus.

    “That accusation is laughable at best and nothing more than a political maneuver,” stated Vinnedge. “In fact, we have morally produced treatments for patients who are already infected, notably Hydroxychloroquine or Plaquenil. And there are more promising treatments on the way to prevent infection entirely.”

    https://christiansfortruth.com/does-a-new-highly-anticipated-covid-19-vaccine-use-aborted-human-fetal-cell-lines/
     

    “Do not support the proposed vaccines for COVID-19 as they contain recycled fetal tissue.”

    Did you not even read your own link? According to that, the Moderna version is the one derived from HEK 293 cell lines, whereas the Sanofi Pasteur isn’t.

    So just use the Sanofi. Problem solved.

    That being said, your link seems shady. It contains outright falsehoods such as this:

    And keep in mind, by the time any COVID-19 vaccine is ready for human use, it will already be obsolete and unnecessary, as the prime infection period will have passed.

    We don’t know how long immunity to this new virus lasts (in the case of previously known coronaviruses, immunity lasts about a year or two), so there’s no way of knowing when a vaccine will be “obsolete and unnecessary.

  163. @Thomas

    Well OBVIOUSLY it makes much more sense to lock down the 97 % of people who will never be at serious threat from the current corona virus mutation, then trying to isolate the 3% of people who might actually be at risk.
     
    That's a capital idea! Now we only need to know who those people who will never (your words) be at serious threat are. 40% of hospitalizations right now from coronavirus are of patients under 55. (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/18/health/coronavirus-young-people.html) And there still are people in their 20s, 30s, 40s, even children, who are becoming seriously ill, even dying. (Steve's observation about the degree to which people vainly hope they can predict who does or doesn't get sick or die from something deserves a fresh mention.)

    Then we need to figure out how to "isolate" that 3% who might be at risk, whatever that may mean. Are we sending them to an island somewhere? How about a prison? If they live in a multigenerational household, say, with millennial boomerang children, or grandchildren what do we do then? Should we spring for an apartment for the kids or put the grandkids in foster care? Oh, and what do we do when those people who are at risk need groceries? Or need to go to a hospital? Assume that, in contrast to the ones living with younger relatives, they don't have anyone to shop for them.


    Summer comes, the virus goes away.
     
    There is absolutely nothing, no data or anything else, that supports this. Only an assumption that this virus works like a cold or flu (for that matter, that it works like a seasonal flu: the 1918 Spanish flu struck in the spring and summer). This virus has been spreading among humans, as far as we know, only since November or December of last year. Flu season starts in October. We know nothing about how the seasons might affect this bug. Oh, and even if that is true, summer in the northern hemisphere is winter in the southern hemisphere.

    There are a couple decent studies showing the R0 factor decreases in warmer wearther/climates, both between countries and within countries. That said, this still appears to spread OK in warm weather. Even if the more dire assessments about the virus are true there’s a good chance it will slow down a bit in the summer.

  164. @AnonAnon
    Steve, did you see LA County is reporting the number of cases on a city by city basis? https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-03-28/these-l-a-county-communities-have-coronavirus-cases-and-these-dont


    Also, the University of Washington published their projections for each state and the country: https://covid19.healthdata.org/projections. They predict California will peak for resource use on April 24 & the US will have ~81,000 dead by August 3 (California: ~6100 dead).

    Anon Anon, Ohio publishes cases by county AND zip code. There is a map at Cleveland.com (Plains Dealer online.)

  165. @Whiskey
    This Kung Flu panic is all hype. Where are all the dead homeless?

    They have the worst health status, live rough, do not social distance and abuse feud and booze

    Where are all the dead homeless? Dead bodies attract attention.

    Whiskey, the “unhoused”, as they are now called , are a vital resource in California. Hundreds of millions of dollars are spend on them by a well entrenched Government-Homeless complex. San Francisco spent $205 million last year and will double that soon. Hundreds of thousands, yes hundreds of thousands of free hypodremic needles given freely each month. The politicians give the money to the homeless advocates and the advocates make donations back to the politicians, Homelessness is a thriving business in Ca.

  166. Anonymous[147] • Disclaimer says:
    @Chrisnonymous
    Steve,

    Here is research showing that wearing masks by sick people is more effective at protecting healthy people than wearing masks by healthy people.

    Respiratory source control using a surgical mask: An in vitro study.
    ...With cough, source control (mask or respirator on Source) was statistically superior to mask or unsealed respirator protection on the Receiver (Receiver protection) in all environments. To equal source control during coughing, the N95 respirator must be Vaseline-sealed. During tidal breathing, source control was comparable or superior to mask or respirator protection on the Receiver. Source control via surgical masks may be an important adjunct defense against the spread of respiratory infections. The fit of the mask or respirator, in combination with the airflow patterns in a given setting, are significant contributors to source control efficacy....
     
    This is a pretty strong research basis for the CDC's request for healthy people not to wear masks in favor of making them available for the sick. On the other hand, it also supports the idea of universal mask usage in epidemics where people don't know if they're sick or not.

    It also supports the idea that, if you think you may have been exposed, you ought to "mask-quarantine" or "maskantine" for a week while you wait for symptoms to show up. Maskantining is important since people are most infectious when their symptoms not begin, not when their symptoms are well-established.

    Maskantining is important since people are most infectious when their symptoms not begin, not when their symptoms are well-established.

    This is absolutely false. Carriers are at their most contagious when they are SYMPTOMATIC, that is, when they are coughing out high viral load particles.

    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    Research has established that infectiousness is at the beginning of the infection. The first few days with symptoms are more infectious than later, and it is speculated that high infectivity exists before symptoms as well.

    What do you get out of ignorant trolling?
  167. anon[380] • Disclaimer says:
    @Corvinus
    If I had to hazard a guess as who the commenter is on this in depth piece, it would be res or DanHFromMD. I would say whoever wrote it, whether it be them or someone else, probably doesn’t want the blowback from the commenters here who believe Covid-19 is a hoax or is overblown. Clearly, this work undercuts their “arguments”.

    “If I had to hazard a guess as who the commenter is on this in depth piece, it would be res or DanHFromMD.”

    No, I wrote it. Readers will just have to judge the arguments on their merits, which people seem to be doing ok at. I don’t comment too often and am indifferent to any hurt feelings of other commenters. I have more important problems. Think about it, you might find that you do too.

    • Replies: @Corvinus
    It’s possible you wrote it. But it’s also possible you’re taking credit for something another person wrote.
  168. Anonymous[147] • Disclaimer says:
    @Thea
    If caustic feminism and obesity go by the wayside after this clears that would be cause for jubilation.

    This could seriously alter some demographics. Perhaps a shortage of men will lead to more gratitude towards them.

    Perhaps a shortage of men will lead to more gratitude towards them.

    It will only lead to greater pressure for more immigration.

  169. @Corvinus
    Why are you mad, bro?

    Why are you mad, bro?

    No, you are failing to notice your own biases and misperceptions. Fake news on your part Corvirus.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    The Crow assumes the worst of us and the best of Them.

    Perhaps he should go by Tabanidus or Œstridus.
    , @Corvinus
    Projection is one of your strengths I will admit.
  170. @Johnny Rico
    That is the major omission from all the analysis to date and the professionals, the scientists, the epidemiologists, the virologists, none of them can admit that they just do not have a really good grasp about how it is being transmitted so effectively. That they cannot spell out exactly what "by touch" means or explain why masks might be useless is a huge fail for the medical profession.

    A mailman sent an email to This Week in Virology last week asking if he could catch it from the mail or from a mailbox and the "experts" fumbled with the question for 5 minutes producing nothing.

    We can build electric robot cars but we can't test this shit is a laboratory? Did they close MIT?

    “Did they close MIT?”

    Mr. Rico, I agree with you, it’s frustrating concerning lack of information on touch transmission. A least a couple of credible virologist are indicating that direct, or near direct, contact with an infected individual is most likely required for transmission.

    As for MIT, yes they closed it, two weeks ago. A neighbors son, a second year MIT student, is coming out of garage quarantine tomorrow. When his parents went to pick him up from the airport they took two cars, he drove one back home. Not sure if this isolation was more to protect the parents, or their son; mother is an M.D..

  171. @Dacian Julien Soros
    Here the first paragraph of Raoult's paper, Results section:

    "A total of 26 patients received hydroxychloroquine and 16 were control patients. Six hydroxychloroquine-treated patients were lost in follow-up during the survey because of early cessation of treatment. Reasons are as follows: three patients were transferred to intensive care unit, including one transferred on day2 post-inclusion who was PCR-positive on day1, one transferred on day3 post-inclusion who was PCR-positive on days1-2 and one transferred on day4 post-inclusion who was PCR-positive on day1 and day3; one patient died on day3 post inclusion and was PCR-negative on day2; one patient decided to leave the hospital on day3 post-inclusion and was PCR-negative on days1-2; finally, one patient stopped the treatment on day3 post-inclusion because of nausea and was PCR-positive on days1-2-3. The results presented here are therefore those of 36 patients (20 hydroxychloroquine-treated patients and 16 control patients). None of the control patients was lost in follow-up."

    So according to the Good Doctor, 0/16 patients died and 0/16 were intubated without hydroxychloroquine. With HCQ, I see 1/26 dead and 3/26 intubated. Sounds fine.

    “Here the first paragraph of Raoult’s paper, Results section:”

    Wrong paper, that one dates from March 17. Try the link in the post.

    • Replies: @Dacian Julien Soros
    The second "paper" is not a paper. It is only a PDF uploaded by the authors on their own website.

    Moreover, the second "trial" is not a trial. It describes how they treated 80 people for three days, with the result that 3 were intubated and 1 was dead. Was it any good? I don't know. The only comparator I have is 0/16 dead and 0/16 intubated from the first study. You do the maths.
  172. The Florida panhandle beaches (especially the Destin area) have also had a surprisingly low number of cases…

    For some reason, so does Tallahassee, a state capital with two large universities.

    One year I took Amtrak from Minnesota to Florida, with a nine-hour layover in New Orleans the weekend before Shrove Tuesday. After a parade or two, I rode east with a bunch of FSU kids (they were white, so presumably not FAMU) returning to studies. (I, and possibly they, hadn’t known of Mobile’s at the time; the train stopped there.)

    This can’t have been unusual. There must be be plenty of post-MG NOLA-Talla traffic every year.

    Of course, the Sunset Limited is notoriously late as a rule, sometimes by days. (Freight rules.) But today is Passion Sunday, 31 days after Ash Wednesday. That’s plenty of time for Amtrak to transport a bug.

    Did the kids go to Mobile this year? “No one goes to New Orleans anymore. It’s too crowded!”

  173. @William Badwhite

    Why are you mad, bro?
     
    No, you are failing to notice your own biases and misperceptions. Fake news on your part Corvirus.

    The Crow assumes the worst of us and the best of Them.

    Perhaps he should go by Tabanidus or Œstridus.

  174. @utu
    Yes, but its is no longer exponential. Daily new deaths in last 7 days seem like a plateau.

    Daily new deaths in last 7 days seem like a plateau.

    Eventually you run out of old sick people.

  175. @Wilkey

    On point 1, currently a number of industries are completely shut down. Zero revenue, continued expenses. They will default on their rent...
     
    And what will the landlords do, evict them? And lease their spaces to whom?

    To a large extent the landlords are going to have to eat their losses. Their tenants are shut down because of some rather unique circumstances - circumstances which hopefully will end soon. They can try to force them to pay, but if they soon find themselves with vacancies it won’t be worth the hassle of recovering a month or two of rent.

    Except that is not how Landords behaved in the past 2008-2009 Recession. Or any other. Yes they evict non payers. They’d rather have spaces empty (and do and have) than take a below market rent. They get tax write offs and such like for non rented spaces, none for below market. And valuation of their properties are affected by below market rent, not a trivial matter for REITs and the like with thousands of those properties.

    Besides that there is taxes, utilities, other fees that cannot be put off. MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done. We are looking at a minimum of 20% unemployment, which is Great Depression Levels.

    If this lockdown goes on much longer, places like Disney which has furloughed employees without pay at Disneyland, DisneyWorld, Disney Studios etc. will start laying off most of them. At best, when the lockdown ends the park attendance which accounts for most of their revenue and profits will be permanently impacted. People will go out a lot less in crowds out of fear of disease which is new in American behavior. Most restaurants will be reduced to supplying take out delivery for Grubhub and the like. With significant and permanent employment reduction: no more waiters, far less cooks, etc.

    Ford might go out of business over this, with significant impact on employment. We are looking at a permanent reduction in consumer spending, hoarding of food and supplies, massive unemployment, as you cannot shut down a consumer based economy and expect it to start up again. Consumers and small businesses just don’t have the reserve cash cushion to go five weeks without pay or customers. A small business owner who goes bankrupt is not just one more unemployed but all his workers, and going bankrupt he cannot start a new business. His credit is now crap, consumer demand in the toilet, and no lending or market demand now exists.

    So you can expect significant push-back on lockdown from: Disney, Ford, GM, Apple, Target, Wal-Mart, ATT-Time-Warner, Universal, all the airlines, hotels, etc. This is why Cuomo has second thoughts. He’s not just feeling the heat from the Upstaters, but from big companies who have lots of lobbyists and have no problems finding and funding challengers for him among rivals.

    • Replies: @ben tillman

    And valuation of their properties are affected by below market rent, not a trivial matter for REITs and the like with thousands of those properties.
     
    He didn't say anything about below-market rent. Whether the building is leased, and at what price(s), is what matters in valuation, so the valuation concern strongly supports his point.
    , @Jack D

    They get tax write offs and such like for non rented spaces, none for below market
     
    Nothing like that exists outside of your imagination.
    , @Hibernian

    Ford might go out of business over this...
     
    General Motors first, just like last time.
    , @dfordoom

    MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done.
     
    That part I agree with. Most of the small businesses that are closing their doors will never reopen them.

    At the moment if you want to buy something other than groceries you pretty much have to buy it online. But small business is not just losing those customers in the short term. They will lose many of them permanently. People will discover that shopping online is easier and cheaper.

    Mom & Pop stores will mostly disappear forever. Shopping centres will have lots of empty shops that will remain empty forever. And that will encourage even more people to shop online. Why go to a shopping centre if most of the shops aren't there any more? So it won't just be small stores that suffer. Medium-sized stores will see their customer base eroded. Many will go to the wall.

    Tax breaks and handouts won't save most of those businesses. Those things won't help you if your customer base suddenly shrinks dramatically.

    This will be a permanent change. It will be very good news for the mega-corporations that dominate online shopping. If there's one thing mega-corporations hate it's competition.
  176. @RAZ
    I have no experience with other Mardi Gras' but have been to New Orleans during it. Wall to wall people lining streets watching floats and trying to catch beads and mostly other crap thrown from the floats. Locals turn out but also lots of tourists. Doubt infected tourists turning out to the same degree in Mobile or other locales.

    And probably no real counterpart to the masses of people partying in the French Quarter in other American cities. At least not Mardi Gras. Chicago did hold their St. Patrick's parade with the active bar scene.

    But was wondering about Rio and Carnivale. That is huge and would be a spreader. Was that held?

    Chicago did hold their St. Patrick’s parade with the active bar scene.

    No, we didn’t. Cancelled almost at the last minute.

  177. @Jack D
    I hope you are joking but I fear that you are not.

    Yes better for millions to die than to use the cells descended from a fetus that was aborted in 1970s. Fruit of the poisoned tree! This is sheer stupidity like the Negro family that wants royalties because another cell line was taken from their mother's tumor in the 1940s.

    Problem is, it could be an additional incentive, nor for the mothers, but for the doctors and clinics. If it’s 50, or even 20, years old, it’s fine with me, but how many instances are there of that.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    There's no incentive. The whole meaning of a cell line is that it's one and done - you culture the cells and from then on all the cells descend from the original culture and you don't have to go back for any more fetuses. They did this 50 years ago when no one worried about crap like that - they were interested in saving future lives, the fetus was already aborted. Nowadays knowing the sensitivity, they'd use cells from a fetus that had spontaneously aborted (i.e. a miscarriage) or from a live donor if they need to start a new line, but they don't since they already have a working line.
  178. Let’s get the news out about this technique for making masks more effective. It involves coating the middle layer of surgical masks with saltwater and letting it dry. The salt attracts virus droplets much more readily than a dry mask does, and the salt destroys the virus. The mask can be used much longer.

    https://www.nature.com/articles/srep39956

    Also includes instructions.

    • Replies: @vhrm
    That seems like a pretty cool idea, but i didn't see any instructions per se on how one would do it at home, though really they just soaked the middle layer of the mask in a saltwater and surfactant solution and dried it.

    heh. looks like the prof's still at it:
    https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2020/02/11/salt-is-the-secret-ingredient-in-these-face-masks-that-could-prevent-spread-of-next-coronavirus.html

    and hoping to bring his patented product to market in 18 months.

    There's definitely a strong profit vibe coming off of him in this article as he tut tuts yokels trying to do it themselves without his secret formula... even though in the original paper they explicitly say exactly what concentration of salt they used, what surfactant and what process (which was just soak and dry)

    That said, the original study was just on the filter, not an actual mask. maybe when you wear it the normal salt would penetrate the inner layer and irritate your skin or maybe you inhale a lot of salt or something.

    Most importantly, the original study has no pictures of mice wearing little masks, which was a big disappointment.
  179. @Harry Baldwin
    What concerns me is the political opposition to the use of hydroxochloroquine. Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer has threatened to revoke the medical licenses of doctors who prescribe it. Is this just TDS in action?

    What concerns me is the political opposition to the use of hydroxochloroquine. Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer has threatened to revoke the medical licenses of doctors who prescribe it. Is this just TDS in action?

    I think so.

  180. @Anonymous
    Didier Raoult keeps emphasizing EARLY TREATMENT!!!

    He also added the third zinc component to the regimen last week.

    Seems like very few are actually going to his twitter...

    @raoult_didier

    His latest video has subtitles (click the center icon in the row of three at lower right of screen) He looks eccentric with the rock n roll hair in still photos. But in the video he's a completely normal speaker...

    Considering his long career it is absurd to think that he's fudging data. Check his wiki.

    Also he's a groundbreaking researcher. Not some country doctor. Check his wiki.

    Good news is that this man has decided to fight. This guy put up his twitter just last week because he realized he's in a vicious all out war and needs to go around the MSM.

    Dr. Raoult posted an updated counter on his twitter feed, at noon GMT today (3/29/20):
    https://mobile.twitter.com/raoult_didier/status/1244237477826703360/photo/1

    If the image doesn’t show up, the key points (translated from French) are:

    At IHU Mediterranee Infection [Dr. Raoult’s hospital in Marseilles]:
    * Number of patients treated (hydroxychloroquine ± azithromycin) — 1,003
    * Number of deceased with >3 days of treatment (hydroxychloroquine ± azithromycin) — 1

    Edits:

    Here is the dynamic page at the IHU’s website.

    And, “Nombre de deces avec >3 jours de traitement…” likely means “Number who have died after surviving 3-days of being treated…”, e.g. excluding patients who were so ill that they died after only 2 days.

  181. This whole thing seems like UFO sightings , I saw one once everybody has an opinion but the Gov’t says it’s swamp gas and weather balloons until they can enact temporary repressive measures that will never will become permanent .

  182. anon[377] • Disclaimer says:

    It’s essentially fake news. The pharmacists want to prevent hoarding by doctors. Limit the current use to hospitals and emergency rooms and treatment of confirmed cases. Current limited supplies would be scarfed up by doctors writing for family/friends, just in case use etc. Would it surprise you if pharmacists noticed this behavior by doctors?

    True that it happened. False narrative as to why. You heard it here first.

  183. @Jonathan Mason

    Once the health system crashes, we’re looking at 50K deaths.
     
    Not necessarily. Americans are a very flexible people and will rise to the occasion, and the federal government has already shown that it is ready to print unlimited money to save America from the virus and to prevent the health system from "crashing".

    You can argue about the pros and cons of the US health care system, but the US health care system is surely in much better condition than the health care system in, say, Iran or Pakistan, or Venezuela, or Nigeria.

    If the worst comes to the worst and a universal state of emergency is declared the US can commandeer cruise ships and use them as floating hospitals, offshore islands can be used as quarantine camps, retired health services personnel can be pressed into service or taken on as volunteers, trained nurses and doctors employed by insurance companies can be pressed into service, and so on.

    And then there are huge numbers of trained medical personnel in the US military, which is a large part of the US economy, who can be deployed in the War on Germs, and millions of soldiers with first aid training who can be used as auxiliaries.

    I think it is fair to say that the US has more resources than any other nation, if it cares to deploy them. Yes, the economy as we have know it might go to hell in a handbasket, but there are no free lunches. The homes people live in will continue to exist, land will continue to exist, food will still be grown, chickens will still lay eggs, bread will be baked, medicines will still be made, alcohol will be brewed, and we will all be in it together.

    …we will all be in it together.

    Just like the vibrants in France!

    French Official Says Quarantine Should Not Be Enforced In Migrant Areas To Avoid Riots

    https://www.zerohedge.com/political/french-official-says-quarantine-should-not-be-enforced-migrant-areas-avoid-riots

    Look at the solidarity shown in those videos! It’s practically the Universal Brotherhood of Man!

    • Replies: @vhrm
    Yes, but..
    don't OD on zerohedge. The world is always ending over there. i.e. they exaggerate a lot both in severity and urgency.


    The one video i clicked through was some dude jumping on a police car, but everyone was laughing. Even the cops seemed chill with it.

    The next tweet in the thread was pretty cute though:

    https://mobile.twitter.com/PatriciaChoco1/status/1243803057982443520

  184. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/24/business/doctors-buying-coronavirus-drugs.html

    Which is the motivation for governor’s signing orders restricting use.

  185. @William Badwhite

    Why are you mad, bro?
     
    No, you are failing to notice your own biases and misperceptions. Fake news on your part Corvirus.

    Projection is one of your strengths I will admit.

    • Replies: @William Badwhite
    Nuh uh. No, you're wrong.
  186. @anon
    "If I had to hazard a guess as who the commenter is on this in depth piece, it would be res or DanHFromMD."

    No, I wrote it. Readers will just have to judge the arguments on their merits, which people seem to be doing ok at. I don't comment too often and am indifferent to any hurt feelings of other commenters. I have more important problems. Think about it, you might find that you do too.

    It’s possible you wrote it. But it’s also possible you’re taking credit for something another person wrote.

  187. @Spud Boy
    I'd like to understand how the cases in China got to 80K and then just stopped. Presumably people from Wuhan travelled throughout China before the lock down, so shouldn't other cities in China have experienced NY City-type numbers? Or did China simply stop reporting new cases?

    China locked down Wuhan hard.

    And other places medium hard.

    Transmission slowed down and eventually stopped (or nearly stopped).

    And that’s about it.
    how much one can trust the absolute numbers… is unknown, but it certainly appears to have gotten a lot better over there so they’re not OBVIOUSLY false.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    I started to believe China was succeeding 3 weeks ago when I heard Xi Jinping was visiting Wuhan in person.
  188. @Whiskey
    Except that is not how Landords behaved in the past 2008-2009 Recession. Or any other. Yes they evict non payers. They'd rather have spaces empty (and do and have) than take a below market rent. They get tax write offs and such like for non rented spaces, none for below market. And valuation of their properties are affected by below market rent, not a trivial matter for REITs and the like with thousands of those properties.

    Besides that there is taxes, utilities, other fees that cannot be put off. MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done. We are looking at a minimum of 20% unemployment, which is Great Depression Levels.

    If this lockdown goes on much longer, places like Disney which has furloughed employees without pay at Disneyland, DisneyWorld, Disney Studios etc. will start laying off most of them. At best, when the lockdown ends the park attendance which accounts for most of their revenue and profits will be permanently impacted. People will go out a lot less in crowds out of fear of disease which is new in American behavior. Most restaurants will be reduced to supplying take out delivery for Grubhub and the like. With significant and permanent employment reduction: no more waiters, far less cooks, etc.

    Ford might go out of business over this, with significant impact on employment. We are looking at a permanent reduction in consumer spending, hoarding of food and supplies, massive unemployment, as you cannot shut down a consumer based economy and expect it to start up again. Consumers and small businesses just don't have the reserve cash cushion to go five weeks without pay or customers. A small business owner who goes bankrupt is not just one more unemployed but all his workers, and going bankrupt he cannot start a new business. His credit is now crap, consumer demand in the toilet, and no lending or market demand now exists.

    So you can expect significant push-back on lockdown from: Disney, Ford, GM, Apple, Target, Wal-Mart, ATT-Time-Warner, Universal, all the airlines, hotels, etc. This is why Cuomo has second thoughts. He's not just feeling the heat from the Upstaters, but from big companies who have lots of lobbyists and have no problems finding and funding challengers for him among rivals.

    And valuation of their properties are affected by below market rent, not a trivial matter for REITs and the like with thousands of those properties.

    He didn’t say anything about below-market rent. Whether the building is leased, and at what price(s), is what matters in valuation, so the valuation concern strongly supports his point.

  189. @Hibernian
    Problem is, it could be an additional incentive, nor for the mothers, but for the doctors and clinics. If it's 50, or even 20, years old, it's fine with me, but how many instances are there of that.

    There’s no incentive. The whole meaning of a cell line is that it’s one and done – you culture the cells and from then on all the cells descend from the original culture and you don’t have to go back for any more fetuses. They did this 50 years ago when no one worried about crap like that – they were interested in saving future lives, the fetus was already aborted. Nowadays knowing the sensitivity, they’d use cells from a fetus that had spontaneously aborted (i.e. a miscarriage) or from a live donor if they need to start a new line, but they don’t since they already have a working line.

  190. @Whiskey
    Except that is not how Landords behaved in the past 2008-2009 Recession. Or any other. Yes they evict non payers. They'd rather have spaces empty (and do and have) than take a below market rent. They get tax write offs and such like for non rented spaces, none for below market. And valuation of their properties are affected by below market rent, not a trivial matter for REITs and the like with thousands of those properties.

    Besides that there is taxes, utilities, other fees that cannot be put off. MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done. We are looking at a minimum of 20% unemployment, which is Great Depression Levels.

    If this lockdown goes on much longer, places like Disney which has furloughed employees without pay at Disneyland, DisneyWorld, Disney Studios etc. will start laying off most of them. At best, when the lockdown ends the park attendance which accounts for most of their revenue and profits will be permanently impacted. People will go out a lot less in crowds out of fear of disease which is new in American behavior. Most restaurants will be reduced to supplying take out delivery for Grubhub and the like. With significant and permanent employment reduction: no more waiters, far less cooks, etc.

    Ford might go out of business over this, with significant impact on employment. We are looking at a permanent reduction in consumer spending, hoarding of food and supplies, massive unemployment, as you cannot shut down a consumer based economy and expect it to start up again. Consumers and small businesses just don't have the reserve cash cushion to go five weeks without pay or customers. A small business owner who goes bankrupt is not just one more unemployed but all his workers, and going bankrupt he cannot start a new business. His credit is now crap, consumer demand in the toilet, and no lending or market demand now exists.

    So you can expect significant push-back on lockdown from: Disney, Ford, GM, Apple, Target, Wal-Mart, ATT-Time-Warner, Universal, all the airlines, hotels, etc. This is why Cuomo has second thoughts. He's not just feeling the heat from the Upstaters, but from big companies who have lots of lobbyists and have no problems finding and funding challengers for him among rivals.

    They get tax write offs and such like for non rented spaces, none for below market

    Nothing like that exists outside of your imagination.

  191. @Whiskey
    Except that is not how Landords behaved in the past 2008-2009 Recession. Or any other. Yes they evict non payers. They'd rather have spaces empty (and do and have) than take a below market rent. They get tax write offs and such like for non rented spaces, none for below market. And valuation of their properties are affected by below market rent, not a trivial matter for REITs and the like with thousands of those properties.

    Besides that there is taxes, utilities, other fees that cannot be put off. MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done. We are looking at a minimum of 20% unemployment, which is Great Depression Levels.

    If this lockdown goes on much longer, places like Disney which has furloughed employees without pay at Disneyland, DisneyWorld, Disney Studios etc. will start laying off most of them. At best, when the lockdown ends the park attendance which accounts for most of their revenue and profits will be permanently impacted. People will go out a lot less in crowds out of fear of disease which is new in American behavior. Most restaurants will be reduced to supplying take out delivery for Grubhub and the like. With significant and permanent employment reduction: no more waiters, far less cooks, etc.

    Ford might go out of business over this, with significant impact on employment. We are looking at a permanent reduction in consumer spending, hoarding of food and supplies, massive unemployment, as you cannot shut down a consumer based economy and expect it to start up again. Consumers and small businesses just don't have the reserve cash cushion to go five weeks without pay or customers. A small business owner who goes bankrupt is not just one more unemployed but all his workers, and going bankrupt he cannot start a new business. His credit is now crap, consumer demand in the toilet, and no lending or market demand now exists.

    So you can expect significant push-back on lockdown from: Disney, Ford, GM, Apple, Target, Wal-Mart, ATT-Time-Warner, Universal, all the airlines, hotels, etc. This is why Cuomo has second thoughts. He's not just feeling the heat from the Upstaters, but from big companies who have lots of lobbyists and have no problems finding and funding challengers for him among rivals.

    Ford might go out of business over this…

    General Motors first, just like last time.

  192. @JoeBlow9000
    Let's get the news out about this technique for making masks more effective. It involves coating the middle layer of surgical masks with saltwater and letting it dry. The salt attracts virus droplets much more readily than a dry mask does, and the salt destroys the virus. The mask can be used much longer.

    https://www.nature.com/articles/srep39956

    Also includes instructions.

    That seems like a pretty cool idea, but i didn’t see any instructions per se on how one would do it at home, though really they just soaked the middle layer of the mask in a saltwater and surfactant solution and dried it.

    heh. looks like the prof’s still at it:
    https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2020/02/11/salt-is-the-secret-ingredient-in-these-face-masks-that-could-prevent-spread-of-next-coronavirus.html

    and hoping to bring his patented product to market in 18 months.

    There’s definitely a strong profit vibe coming off of him in this article as he tut tuts yokels trying to do it themselves without his secret formula… even though in the original paper they explicitly say exactly what concentration of salt they used, what surfactant and what process (which was just soak and dry)

    That said, the original study was just on the filter, not an actual mask. maybe when you wear it the normal salt would penetrate the inner layer and irritate your skin or maybe you inhale a lot of salt or something.

    Most importantly, the original study has no pictures of mice wearing little masks, which was a big disappointment.

  193. @The Wild Geese Howard

    ...we will all be in it together.
     
    Just like the vibrants in France!

    French Official Says Quarantine Should Not Be Enforced In Migrant Areas To Avoid Riots

    https://www.zerohedge.com/political/french-official-says-quarantine-should-not-be-enforced-migrant-areas-avoid-riots

    Look at the solidarity shown in those videos! It's practically the Universal Brotherhood of Man!

    Yes, but..
    don’t OD on zerohedge. The world is always ending over there. i.e. they exaggerate a lot both in severity and urgency.

    The one video i clicked through was some dude jumping on a police car, but everyone was laughing. Even the cops seemed chill with it.

    The next tweet in the thread was pretty cute though:

    https://mobile.twitter.com/PatriciaChoco1/status/1243803057982443520

  194. @anon
    "Here the first paragraph of Raoult’s paper, Results section:"

    Wrong paper, that one dates from March 17. Try the link in the post.

    The second “paper” is not a paper. It is only a PDF uploaded by the authors on their own website.

    Moreover, the second “trial” is not a trial. It describes how they treated 80 people for three days, with the result that 3 were intubated and 1 was dead. Was it any good? I don’t know. The only comparator I have is 0/16 dead and 0/16 intubated from the first study. You do the maths.

  195. @Jack D
    I hope you are joking but I fear that you are not.

    Yes better for millions to die than to use the cells descended from a fetus that was aborted in 1970s. Fruit of the poisoned tree! This is sheer stupidity like the Negro family that wants royalties because another cell line was taken from their mother's tumor in the 1940s.

    Look, you can love abortion more than Bernie loves Fidel, but are you really okay with using dead human babies for your vaccine? Really? And please, don’t go on with that 1970s argument that “a fetus isn’t human”. With all the scientific advances we’ve made in the study of DNA, it would appear pretty conclusive that the little guy that was inside your aunt back in 73, was genetically human.

    And by that I’m not even arguing that abortion should be illegal, if you guys want to kill your children, you must have good reasons, but do you really want to use their remains for scientific research?

    • Replies: @Jack D
    I have no problem with it whatsoever. Are you opposed to organ donation? Isn't it better that the tissue be used to save the living? How is it better to just burn or bury it? How does that help?
  196. @vhrm
    China locked down Wuhan hard.

    And other places medium hard.

    Transmission slowed down and eventually stopped (or nearly stopped).

    And that's about it.
    how much one can trust the absolute numbers... is unknown, but it certainly appears to have gotten a lot better over there so they're not OBVIOUSLY false.

    I started to believe China was succeeding 3 weeks ago when I heard Xi Jinping was visiting Wuhan in person.

  197. @Jack D
    You are assuming a crash of the health system, which is a fact not in evidence. Chances are the health system will muddle through more or less. Those whose breathing has not collapsed (80% of those requiring any hospitalization at all) can be accommodated in emergency hospitals set up in convention centers and the like. You are also assuming that the health system actually works wonders -- that it reduces mortality by 80%, which is another fact not in evidence. Only a small fraction of victims require ventilation and an even smaller fraction actually benefit from it. Now when applied to a large # like 1 M infected individuals, this still adds up to 10,000 (mostly but not entirely) sick elderly people who are going to die (a little sooner than they were going to die anyway). This is certainly tragic but it doesn't imply the end of civilization as we know it.

    what’s happening with shootings? Up or down?

    • Replies: @Jack D
    Murders way down last week, from 1 per day down to 1 per week. But NY murders were already low so one fewer murder per day is not going to make up for 160 Wuhan Virus deaths per day.

    https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/nypd/downloads/pdf/crime_statistics/cs-en-us-city.pdf
  198. How deadly is the coronavirus? It’s still far from clear
    There is room for different interpretations of the data
    Dr John Lee

    The data on COVID-19 differs wildly from country to country. Look at the figures for Italy and Germany. At the time of writing, Italy has 69,176 recorded cases and 6,820 deaths, a rate of 9.9 percent. Germany has 32,986 cases and 157 deaths, a rate of 0.5 percent. Do we think that the strain of virus is so different in these nearby countries as to virtually represent different diseases? Or that the populations are so different in their susceptibility to the virus that the death rate can vary more than twentyfold? If not, we ought to suspect systematic error, that the COVID-19 data we are seeing from different countries is not directly comparable.

    Look at other rates: Spain 7.1 percent, US 1.3 percent, Switzerland 1.3 percent, France 4.3 percent, South Korea 1.3 percent, Iran 7.8 percent. We may very well be comparing apples with oranges. Recording cases where there was a positive test for the virus is a very different thing to recording the virus as the main cause of death.

    https://spectator.us/deadly-coronavirus-still-far-clear-covid-19/

  199. @Steve Sailer
    California is very near the bottom of the states in tests per capita, so the infection counts are relatively low.

    But the social distancing has been pretty sizable for the last 10 days or so. Walking around my suburban neighborhood today, it looked like people were now going for 20 feet of distance between passerbys. Traffic is extremely light.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    A few days ago, I saw a couple of dozen vultures circling over ahead.

    Sight of the gallows Steve? Do you feel lucky? Sight-of-the-gallows focusing your mind?

    I can tell you when I am country running, and having them circling above me, it gives me pause.

    I am happy to have them convert carcasses into offal, but I have some notion that I might trip, hit my head on a rock, and wake up to those bastards eating my flesh. I have the same sense about crows. Corvinus and his brethren doing what libs do. And only because they aspire to vampire status. Parasites gonna feast on the host.

    • Agree: bomag
  200. @Steve Sailer
    what's happening with shootings? Up or down?

    Murders way down last week, from 1 per day down to 1 per week. But NY murders were already low so one fewer murder per day is not going to make up for 160 Wuhan Virus deaths per day.

    https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/nypd/downloads/pdf/crime_statistics/cs-en-us-city.pdf

  201. @Rich
    Look, you can love abortion more than Bernie loves Fidel, but are you really okay with using dead human babies for your vaccine? Really? And please, don't go on with that 1970s argument that "a fetus isn't human". With all the scientific advances we've made in the study of DNA, it would appear pretty conclusive that the little guy that was inside your aunt back in 73, was genetically human.

    And by that I'm not even arguing that abortion should be illegal, if you guys want to kill your children, you must have good reasons, but do you really want to use their remains for scientific research?

    I have no problem with it whatsoever. Are you opposed to organ donation? Isn’t it better that the tissue be used to save the living? How is it better to just burn or bury it? How does that help?

    • Replies: @Rich
    You can't see the difference, so what's the point?
  202. @Whiskey
    Except that is not how Landords behaved in the past 2008-2009 Recession. Or any other. Yes they evict non payers. They'd rather have spaces empty (and do and have) than take a below market rent. They get tax write offs and such like for non rented spaces, none for below market. And valuation of their properties are affected by below market rent, not a trivial matter for REITs and the like with thousands of those properties.

    Besides that there is taxes, utilities, other fees that cannot be put off. MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done. We are looking at a minimum of 20% unemployment, which is Great Depression Levels.

    If this lockdown goes on much longer, places like Disney which has furloughed employees without pay at Disneyland, DisneyWorld, Disney Studios etc. will start laying off most of them. At best, when the lockdown ends the park attendance which accounts for most of their revenue and profits will be permanently impacted. People will go out a lot less in crowds out of fear of disease which is new in American behavior. Most restaurants will be reduced to supplying take out delivery for Grubhub and the like. With significant and permanent employment reduction: no more waiters, far less cooks, etc.

    Ford might go out of business over this, with significant impact on employment. We are looking at a permanent reduction in consumer spending, hoarding of food and supplies, massive unemployment, as you cannot shut down a consumer based economy and expect it to start up again. Consumers and small businesses just don't have the reserve cash cushion to go five weeks without pay or customers. A small business owner who goes bankrupt is not just one more unemployed but all his workers, and going bankrupt he cannot start a new business. His credit is now crap, consumer demand in the toilet, and no lending or market demand now exists.

    So you can expect significant push-back on lockdown from: Disney, Ford, GM, Apple, Target, Wal-Mart, ATT-Time-Warner, Universal, all the airlines, hotels, etc. This is why Cuomo has second thoughts. He's not just feeling the heat from the Upstaters, but from big companies who have lots of lobbyists and have no problems finding and funding challengers for him among rivals.

    MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done.

    That part I agree with. Most of the small businesses that are closing their doors will never reopen them.

    At the moment if you want to buy something other than groceries you pretty much have to buy it online. But small business is not just losing those customers in the short term. They will lose many of them permanently. People will discover that shopping online is easier and cheaper.

    Mom & Pop stores will mostly disappear forever. Shopping centres will have lots of empty shops that will remain empty forever. And that will encourage even more people to shop online. Why go to a shopping centre if most of the shops aren’t there any more? So it won’t just be small stores that suffer. Medium-sized stores will see their customer base eroded. Many will go to the wall.

    Tax breaks and handouts won’t save most of those businesses. Those things won’t help you if your customer base suddenly shrinks dramatically.

    This will be a permanent change. It will be very good news for the mega-corporations that dominate online shopping. If there’s one thing mega-corporations hate it’s competition.

    • Agree: bomag
    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    This might be true in NYC, but in upstate NY, where my parents live, supermarkets are stocked and accessible.

    Sundance, over at Conservative Treehouse, had a good post on food supply lines about a week ago. Very sensible and reassuring. Probably we will not have issues with food in the long term.

    Now, if this were a MERS-like virus with 30% fatality, that would be different!!
  203. UK says:
    @LondonBob
    In London the high number of confirmed cases are all in the non British areas of the city, similarly we have seen reports of a high number of Jewish and Muslim deaths. My impression is social distancing is better practised by British people. There might be other issues, perhaps minorities have underlying health issues etc.

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/how-to-understand-and-report-figures-for-covid-19-deaths-

    Good article by British pathologist on the problems with the data.

    If you ever spend some time in the private wings of the major teaching hospitals in London you might notice that many of the patients have stereotypically Jewish last names. There are a lot of old rich Jews in London.

    There are also a lot of young ultra-Othodox Jews, though not in those places of course. It seems that both populations are more likely to get ill with Chinavirus.

    (Those wings are sociologically very interesting. Fees can be eye-watering at £20k a night. Most guests are foreign oil money. The doctors are very often the genuine leading experts in their area and also somehow have stereotypically Jewish names. UCLH is a particularly good one to look at. Oddly, the care is essentially the same as the free care but it comes with 3* style accommodation and passable food.)

  204. @res

    This makes no sense in the unconstrained version: if you have a large and growing stock of asymptomatic infected wandering around, the susceptible cannot know who to avoid.
     
    But don't the asymptomatic infected (usually) become non-contagious over time?

    Yep – everyone who gets infected becomes non-contagious after some period.

    Anyone in E either becomes Infectious, or dies – it’s possible to die before you become infectious. Once you’re Exposed you have the thing, but it’s ‘incubating’: the incubation period is the period during which you’re not Infectious, which doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t die from the infection.

    Anyone in I either recovers, dies, or they stop being contagious (and they usually don’t go back to being being susceptible).

    There can also be an interval between the Infectious period and Recovery, though. I think of this as the ‘Missing Compartment’ in SEIR: why it matters will become clear if I pull my finger out and get my model webfacing.

    This is what worried me when I looked at the versions of the equations embedded in Goh’s model. Taking each in turn –

    dS/dt (the change in the total number of Suceptible per unit time) reduces S in each period, as people get Exposed (because once exposed they go on to become Infected – whereupon they either Recover or die).

    The reduction in S happens at a rate that is a constant proportion of I/N (the population infection rate) because of the constraints between R[0], γ and β in SEIR when μ = 0.

    When μ = 0, R[0] = β/γ and ℜₜ = ℜ[0]/N = β/(γN).

    This means that the rate at which S falls per unit time ( ℜₜ/Tinf×I in Goh’s notation) is equal to β×I/N – which is identical to a standard SEIR if the death rate is set to zero.

    I and N are both functions of time, so I/N is not a constant.

    I has its own dynamics – given by dI/dt – to be discussed later.

    N is also time-varying, but its dynamics are simple: it declines 1:1 with the number of deaths, so in the normal SEIR (assuming no birth rates) dN/dt = -μI.

    I’m guessing that Goh’s used CFR to get his impact on N, but that’s not a good idea because all the estimates of CFR are based on very biased samples for C (cases) which overstate CFR. Assuming C is the same as the I in SEIR, is a terrible idea – one that you might expect from a CompSci person (see the CODa afer the MORE).

    Knowing dN/dt and dI/dt, there is an analytical solution for d(I/N)/dt, which affects the transition equations for S and E. (This is true of all SEIR models).

    dE/dt (the change in the total number of Eposed per unit time)
    • increases E by (β×I/N) × S – as per SEIR, which is offset by those who transition to Infectious (at a rate of 1/Tinc in Goh’s notation, a in the ‘standard’ SEIR).

    Goh’s formulation doesn’t take any dead Exposed off the board, which is not right – in theory, a person can die before they become infectious.

    ③ dI/dt (the change in the total number of Infectious per unit time) only reduces I by those who Recover (at a rate of 1/Tinf in Goh’s notation, γ in the ‘standard’ SEIR). It doesn’t take any dead Infectious off the board, which is not right.

    Likewise, his equation for Recovered increases Recovered in each period by “Infectious who have become non-contagious“; it doesn’t account for Infectious who died.

    It’s as if Goh’s tried to ‘fix’ some of the weird death-rate assumptions built into standard SEIR – which is fair enough, because the core assumption is pretty dumb.

    The standard SEIR equations assume that a small proportion (μ) of all ‘compartments’ die each period.

    “Just clip μ% off the top”, rather than putting the dead in the right buckets (E and I). So in addition to any other dynamic, each equation has a deduction of μ times whatever the dependent variable is (e.g., dS/dt has a -μS term; dE/dt has -μE; dI/dt has -μI and dR/dt has -μR).

    Doing is this way is a naïve way to model the fact that the population falls by μ% (i.e., the death rate is a population-wide death rate).

    That’s not a very sensible assumption: it makes no sense for ‘Susceptible’ people who haven’t been exposed, to die of the disease, nor does it make sense for ‘Recovered’ people to die of the disease.

    If it was up to me, I would have a different ‘death rate’ for each compartment (and for Recovered and Susceptible it would revert to the population-wide death rate for ‘representative’ people) – but that would make it a ‘custom’ SEIR, which is fair enough so long as it’s fully disclosed.

    .

    There is a lot of data being produced, and a lot of model results being chucked around with the level of authority always associated with the medical profession – who seldom caveat any statement that they make (mostly because they are fucking hopeless at UQ – uncertainty quantification).

    The whole paradigm reminds me of climate models (another absolute shitshow of poor technique and over-specified models that are tweaked into submission), but getting more eyes on it is a good thing.

    There is far more access to their research output now, than there was in the time of SARS (or even of MERS), so it’s my hope that there will be a ‘Lucas Critique’ kind of moment in their discipline, like there was in quantitative economics in the late 1970s – which cleaned up quant economics dramatically. So much so that most of the critiques that you read about quant economics, are regurgitations of Lucas-style problems: very few of them have been relevant since the nid-80s (there are still plenty of shit MBA-having ‘quant economists’ around, but they’re not representative of the discipline).

    [MORE]

    CODA

    This reinforces my experience about the difference between CompSci people (like Goh) and people from disciplinary quant.

    CompSci people can convert a set of equations into code reasonably readily, but they have almost no idea about what the equations mean, where best to apply important transitional dynamics (like deaths, in this instance), or what cross-equation constraints are violated when a specific parameter is imposed (or swapped out for some other thing, like R[0]).

    I”ve had a bug up my ass about this for two decades – it was bad enough when non-finance quants started arbitraging across to quant finance, but it really got bad when almost all quant moved from the individual quant’s desktop to a webGUI stuck on top of a database.

    At that point managements thought it sensible to get normal coders into the mix, because they’re relatively cheap.

    This was a foreseeable problem when in late 2001 I was responsible (from the analysts side, and overall) for a project to completely revamp a quant back-end for equities and managed fund analysis.

    The coders thought they knew what was being asked of them by the analysts. Converting a formula to code and pointing it at the right data… piece of piss.

    Piece of piss unless there’s a problem, and then nobody knows what caused the problem because they’re talking at cross purposes.

    When the output produced differed from what was expected, the analysts could not track down the cause: they only knew that the numbers they got from R/Excel/whatever were not the same as what was coming our of ‘my’ much-vaunted new backend.

    Turned out that the coders hadn’t realised that variables have very precise names for a reason (e.g., some calculations that required NTA, instead used a data column whose column code translated to “Net Assets”, not “Net Tangible Assets”. Others (done by a different guy) used the correct definition. Still others used Net Asset Value).

    In the end I wound up sitting with the longest-serving coder on the team (also the most diligent men coder I have ever met, but who I could not get allocated to my team), and we spent 36 hours straight one long weekend going over every calculation, working out precisely which column of which data table it was referencing, and checking that the column definition was precisely what was intended.

    We came in on the Tuesday knowing we had fixed everything, and announced it in the morning meeting. The analysts – skeptical cunts, just like their boss – started checking output and knew within ten minute we weren’t bullshitting.

    It was legen…. wait for it ….. dary.

    Anyhow… point is,

    In general, CompSci guys don’t know the model and aren’t taught to be all that interested in learning about it (because so much of their stuff is piecework and/or short-term contract gigs).

    Disciplinary quants are better, but only know things to look for that they encountered in their own discipline (so they are AWFUL on UQ if they come from disciplines where the data has very tight distributions, like Engineering or Physics).

    And as I said at the start of this hysteria, medical quants are among the worst, because they are protected by the halo effect afforded to the entire profession, and they’re mostly dealing with innumerates (most doctors are smart people, but are shockingly bad at statistics, for example).

  205. @candid_observer
    Honestly, given the exponential function at the base of the spread of the virus, it makes little sense to make projections until we can get a real grasp of the basic variables, including, most importantly, the effect of various kinds of measures on the exponent, R0, driving the function.

    This must be at base a classic differential system, in which the stability and outcome of the process depends on variables that may be manipulated in a roughly linear fashion, but which affect results exponentially. If the original value of R0 is 3.0, then if we can reduce the number of communication events by a factor of 33%, then the numbers will stop growing. Anything under 33%, and they will reduce.

    Obviously, we don't know yet what the current measures have effected. There's some significant delay between the time at which measures have been introduced and the time in which they are reflected in numbers of concern, such as #of cases and # of deaths. I've never been clear on how long that delay might need to be.

    I'd guess that within a week we might have a much better informed picture.

    Obviously too we don't have a good sense of how changing weather might affect things.

    In many ways, discussing what we should do is quite premature until we have a sense of these things, precisely because of the vastly different outcomes not terribly different values of the input parameters might produce. Why even speculate until we have a handle on these things? Neither hysteria nor indifference makes a particle of sense at this point.

    We need cool heads most of all -- they are in much shorter supply, it seems, than ventilators. We need to wait until we see the whites of the enemies eyes.

    This must be at base a classic differential system, in which the stability and outcome of the process depends on variables that may be manipulated in a roughly linear fashion, but which affect results exponentially.

    You’re right. I wasn’t clear on this because you can crudely model the beginning stages of transmission by putting R0 in the base and time in the exponent where total infections I = R0^t. But the SIR model, Susceptible Infectious Recovered, which is itself simplistic, is, as you say, expressed as a system of differential equations. When it’s put into graphable form, the transmissibility factors actually end up in the exponent rather than the base.

    Of the differential equations in the SIR model, the most interesting is the rate of total current infections, which is ⅅt𝐼 = 𝛽𝘚𝘐 – 𝛾𝘐 where 𝛽 is the transmission rate, 𝘚 is the number of susceptible people, 𝘐 is the number of currently infected people and 𝛾 is the recovery rate, which is defined as the inverse of the recovery period — if it takes 10 days to recover, then 𝛾 = .1 which means 10 percent of infected people recover each day. The transmission rate 𝛽 is defined as single-encounter transmission risk times the number of people encountered.

    In this model, it turns out that R0 = 𝛽/ 𝛾. So, 𝛽 = 𝛾R0 , which means that the R0 component is contained within 𝛽. And it does in fact end up in the exponent due to what happens when the function ⅅt𝐼 = 𝛽𝘚𝘐 – 𝛾𝘐 is integrated.

    I don’t remember how to properly integrate this whole function, but the linked paper integrates the 𝛽𝘚𝘐 component of it, and because 𝘚 = 1-𝘐, once integrated, the left side of the equation ends up with natural logarithms, which then require exponentiation on the other side, placing the 𝛽 term in the exponent. This is why the growth-rate term ends up in the exponent in models that take susceptibility, total infectious cases and total recovered or immune people into account.

    Anyway, both the full SIR model and the naïve I = R0^t form behave very similarly until a significant portion of the population becomes infected and is therefore no longer susceptible. This means people confidently asserting that the disease will slow down when warmer whether hits may find that the seasonality adjustment is nowhere near enough to put the brakes on the growth rate when the entire population is initially susceptible.

    The difference between 2^t and 1.8^t doesn’t produce much practical difference.

  206. @Corvinus
    Projection is one of your strengths I will admit.

    Nuh uh. No, you’re wrong.

  207. I made a very effective mask from a coffee filter and a bit of elastic string:

    • Disagree: Chrisnonymous
    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    A coffee filter is not a bad idea (contrary to some websit es), but you have no idea how effective your mask is.
  208. Anonymous[211] • Disclaimer says:
    @Johnny Rico
    That is the major omission from all the analysis to date and the professionals, the scientists, the epidemiologists, the virologists, none of them can admit that they just do not have a really good grasp about how it is being transmitted so effectively. That they cannot spell out exactly what "by touch" means or explain why masks might be useless is a huge fail for the medical profession.

    A mailman sent an email to This Week in Virology last week asking if he could catch it from the mail or from a mailbox and the "experts" fumbled with the question for 5 minutes producing nothing.

    We can build electric robot cars but we can't test this shit is a laboratory? Did they close MIT?

    none of them can admit that they just do not have a really good grasp about how it is being transmitted so effectively.

    Do we even have a grasp of how well it is transmitted? Is it really transmitted “so effectively”?

  209. @Jack D
    I have no problem with it whatsoever. Are you opposed to organ donation? Isn't it better that the tissue be used to save the living? How is it better to just burn or bury it? How does that help?

    You can’t see the difference, so what’s the point?

  210. @Anonymous

    Maskantining is important since people are most infectious when their symptoms not begin, not when their symptoms are well-established.
     
    This is absolutely false. Carriers are at their most contagious when they are SYMPTOMATIC, that is, when they are coughing out high viral load particles.

    Research has established that infectiousness is at the beginning of the infection. The first few days with symptoms are more infectious than later, and it is speculated that high infectivity exists before symptoms as well.

    What do you get out of ignorant trolling?

  211. @Andrew Swift
    I made a very effective mask from a coffee filter and a bit of elastic string:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zga_cljdeiI

    A coffee filter is not a bad idea (contrary to some websit es), but you have no idea how effective your mask is.

  212. @dfordoom

    MOST small business will go out of business permanently already. That damage is already done.
     
    That part I agree with. Most of the small businesses that are closing their doors will never reopen them.

    At the moment if you want to buy something other than groceries you pretty much have to buy it online. But small business is not just losing those customers in the short term. They will lose many of them permanently. People will discover that shopping online is easier and cheaper.

    Mom & Pop stores will mostly disappear forever. Shopping centres will have lots of empty shops that will remain empty forever. And that will encourage even more people to shop online. Why go to a shopping centre if most of the shops aren't there any more? So it won't just be small stores that suffer. Medium-sized stores will see their customer base eroded. Many will go to the wall.

    Tax breaks and handouts won't save most of those businesses. Those things won't help you if your customer base suddenly shrinks dramatically.

    This will be a permanent change. It will be very good news for the mega-corporations that dominate online shopping. If there's one thing mega-corporations hate it's competition.

    This might be true in NYC, but in upstate NY, where my parents live, supermarkets are stocked and accessible.

    Sundance, over at Conservative Treehouse, had a good post on food supply lines about a week ago. Very sensible and reassuring. Probably we will not have issues with food in the long term.

    Now, if this were a MERS-like virus with 30% fatality, that would be different!!

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