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What Is the Herd Immunity Rate? 60% Infected in 3 Italian Towns
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An interesting question is: what is the Herd Immunity rate? As hopes that the infection rate is close to the herd immunity rate as more antibody tests have come in, optimists have shifted toward hoping that the herd immunity rate is actually much lower under Let ‘Er Rip conditions than the common ~60% estimate.

We don’t know, but one useful way of checking is to see how high the Ever Infected Rate has gotten in the hardest hit areas. From the Bergamo Chronicle, via Google Translate

Bergamo serological tests, the results of Nembro and Alzano arrive: 61% positive
Serological tests on 750 citizens of Nembro and Alzano. In the meantime, a machine with 2,000 tampons a day is expected

Google Translate is pretty amazing, but I don’t think it’s fully optimized for Italian, judging by that second sentence.

by Armando Di Landro, April 30, 2020

The Lombardy Region continues to impose utmost silence on the ATS on the results of the serological tests, on the one hand because the final result will not be indifferent and will understand how many Bergamoers actually contracted Covid-19, then developing antibodies, starting from citizens for which there had been no official diagnosis using the swab;

Somebody should run a Google Translate on the 1923 hit song “Yes, We Have No Bananas.”

on the other hand, however, because the initial numbers could impress: the tests started with Alzano and Nembro, the countries most affected in the phase of absolute emergency, calling moreover to make the withdrawal the citizens who had been placed in quarantine for contacts with the infected, or remained at home sick due to suspicious symptoms. And so it is, the high percentages long awaited by Palazzo Lombardia, are there and filter anyway: out of 750 blood samples taken to citizens of Nembro and Alzano between Thursday and Tuesday (there were 1,500 in all but about half were sent to Seriate) and analyzed at the Papa Giovanni hospital, in 61% of cases the serological test gave “positive” results, which means feedback on the development of neutralizing antibodies and therefore on having already encountered the disease. A slightly lower percentage, between 58 and 59%, would emerge from the analysis at Bolognini di Seriate.

Okay, I think that means that in 3 northern Italian towns with huge death rates, about 60% had antibodies for infection by the novel coronavirus in April.

That 60% figure is in line with the most common estimates of Herd Immunity.

One possibility is these 60% figures are due to Herd Immunity Overshoot, in which a roaring pandemic such as in northern Italy recently, can shoot past the minimal needed levels. But if brilliant public health experts could ease the infection rate just up to the minimum, perhaps this could be lower.

On the other hand, we have no proof that these 60% figures in these 3 towns are due to herd immunity. They could be more due to the ferocious lockdowns imposed upon these towns last winter.

 
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  1. Anonymous[369] • Disclaimer says:

    Sort of OT. This bit of pharmacological news and analysis from WBAL, the top news station in Baltimore:

    ‘I Couldn’t Breathe’: Harford Co. Woman Given Drug Promoted By President Trump Tells Harrowing Tale

    A Harford County woman who was given the controversial drug hydroxychloroquine along with a Z-Pak antibiotic treatment to combat the coronavirus said the drug cocktail didn’t work.

    “I thought that maybe it had worked, but apparently it didn’t work,” said Kenya Arnold of Abingdon, who spent four days at the University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Medical Center in Bel Air after testing positive for COVID-19…

    She was treated with oxygen and then hydroxychloroquine along with Z-Pak. She claims her heart stopped twice…
    Arnold said the controversial drug cocktail, touted repeatedly by President Donald Trump…

    “I felt worse after that first visit to the hospital,” she said. “I understand the efforts that they are trying to do whatever is necessary to try and to be able to combat this, but a little bit more research even though I know time is limited, needs to be done.”

    https://www.wbal.com/article/460490/3/i-couldnt-breathe-harford-co-woman-given-drug-promoted-by-president-trump-tells-harrowing-tale?fbclid=IwAR2QGhLtsX9Os7jV-qXG06tej4neXtI7WBPHHCkBpvczNCz-d0A0OcLL9Lo

    🤦‍♂️

  2. Google Translate is a powerful tool but cannot be relied on for continuous text. For this post you needed someone who reads Italian and is competent to supply an accurate translation. (I could help you out on that for French). You are in the enviable position of being able to ask for help from your constant readers. That you wondered about the corona virus hotspeak in nothern Italy and that you found the local newspaper for Bergamo and important news issuing from there is commendable. You might have contacted them and asked them to supply an English translation for the article.

    The subject of herd immunity is too important not to report it accurately.

  3. Bruno says:

    lionoftheblogosphere predicts 2,4 million deaths in the USA with this age repartition :

    «0-17 0.003%
    18-44 0.1%
    45-64 0.9%
    65-74 3.0%
    75+ 7.5%

    Here’s a prediction of total deaths in the United States, by age group, if we let the virus run unfettered until we have heard immunity (70% infected)

    0-19 1722
    20-44 76,209
    45-64 528,570
    65-74 711,690
    75+ 1,151,850  »

    So the median age of people dying from Covid in this pessimistic prediction is 74,x yo. Comparing with the median life expectancy in the USA wich is 78,7.

    So the virus would have as a consequence to shorten the median life expectancy of Americans of 4 to 4,5 years.

    This lost would be more concentrated into old, male, obese, sick and brown people.

    Even if it looks tolerable, the media would do a carnage with 2,4 M people. I hope for trump his theories about letting «summer away » this virus will come true … or at least that the second wave starts after the November vote. He should close the borders in October ….

    • Replies: @Hail
    , @Anon
    , @AnotherDad
  4. You/we need to have an accurate translation of the article in the Bergamo newspaper. Google Translate is virturally useless for continuous translation. Ask one of your constant readers who reads Italian for help or ask the editors of the Bergamo newspaper to supply a translation.

    Kudos for thinking of that corona virus hotspot in northern Italy and finding the Bergamo newspaper with important news about herd immunity.

  5. Xens says:

    Children doesn’t seem important for its transmission. So the percentage of children you have in a location may affect the herd immunity rate directly.

    Also, herd immunity may be different during different humidity conditions (higher during maximum droplet transmission conditions, lower otherwise).

    Herd immunity may also be affected by things like a person’s individual behavior when they have a cough. If they think “this may be covid, I shouldn’t go places with other people”, herd immunity may go down. (Idea: free food delivery for sick people.)

    • Replies: @Travis
  6. As I just commented on an earlier thread, I believe winter herd immunity and summer herd immunity are at two different levels.

    Almost all respiratory infections are seasonal and Covid does not seem to be the exception.
    https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/pdf/10.1146/annurev-virology-012420-022445

    That doesn’t mean there won’t be cases in tropical countries but it does mean (I think) that ‘effective herd immunity’ will be greater in summer than in winter. ‘Innate immunity’ is higher in warmer and more humid conditions, as figures 3 and 4 of the above article explain.

    Everywhere we are seeing improvement as summer approaches. Suppose only 30% of the population is susceptible in the warm and humid conditions of summer but 80% of the population is susceptible in cold and dry conditions of winter?

    Then it would look like we are naturally overcoming the disease (as summer approaches) but really we haven’t. That indeed seems to be what we are seeing.

    It looks like a respite is happening, but this virus hasn’t been with us through a winter yet.

    I would say we need a vaccine by October for the northern part of the country.

    • Replies: @res
  7. ‘tampone’ means swab in Italian but also tampon

  8. I just read an article about herd immunity, which begins to answer the obvious question.

    What is Herd immunity, and how does it protect populations?

    Herd immunity is when enough of the population has had the disease that those that haven’t had the disease won’t catch it. The article mentioned that the normal infection rate to achieve herd immunity is 70-90%.

    In other words, 70-90% of the population gets, and survives, the disease. They can no longer catch the disease, and can no longer harbor it to be caught by the uninfected. The uninfected are less likely to become infected, and spread it to other uninfected people.

    So obviously, herd immunity depends on how much uninfected people bump into each other- with less social interaction (say in an isolated nursing home), it is less likely that two previously uninfected people bump into each other (or more specifically, that one currently infected bumps into a previously uninfected). With more social interaction (say, in a school, bar, or airplane) it is more likely that those two individuals will bump into each other and thus spread the infection.

    The point? Herd immunity occurs when the vast majority of us have caught the disease. And it only works if we eliminate the crowded events in our society (schools, enclosed mass gatherings like concerts and political rallies, airplanes, lecture halls, and so on).

    If you are hoping for ‘herd immunity’ to save us from almost all catching the disease, you are hoping for something that by definition doesn’t happen. ‘Herd immunity’ occurs only after nearly all of us have caught the disease.

    And if you are hoping for ‘herd immunity’ to get us to where we can return to normal (take grandma-or an immune compromised 55 year old- on a plane to the beach), that is also not going to happen. Even under 70-90% infection rate, grandma might still bump into more of the 10-30% uninfected, one of which happens to be an infected, not immune person, in crowded places (on the plane, in a crowded restaurant, etc).

    So ‘herd immunity’ is when most of the healthy people have caught the disease, and the unhealthy people self-isolate to avoid it until they die or a vaccine is developed.

    joe

    • Replies: @Hail
  9. Herd Immunity is a red herring. Fact is different people have different levels of social contact. Furthermore, various policies directly influence the spread of the disease in nursing homes and hospitals. Lastly, the only protection anyone has is their own immune system. Fortunately, most people have a good enough immune system to make Covid a non-event, or at least a recoverable disease.

    A government supported strategy of “hide from the virus” is bad medicine as it ensures collateral damage. The government only has large thumbs and large hammers. This means any government mandates will be clumsy and will damage many more innocent people than they will help.

  10. You’d think they’d use tamponi nasali rather than just tamponi.

    Yes, but it only takes infected persons from outside the community contacting uninfected persons in the community to keep the party going.

  11. Anon7 says:

    Are there any epidemiologists who talk about how herd immunity is beneficial – without having a vaccine?

    For Covid-19, we would need about 70% of people to be infected to get to herd immunity.

    Since we don’t know the fatality rate of Covid-19*, it’s ridiculous to expect 70% of Americans (about 200 million people) to just line up and get sick. It is often argued that young people have a much lower mortality rate, but that doesn’t necessarily help. That just means you have big groups of older people who still would have low rates of infection, and they would still be vulnerable.

    Vaccines have two benefits, one direct and the other indirect; 1) vaccinated individuals stay well, or are overall less sick and 2) lots of vaccinated individuals get the entire population to herd immunity, young and old, without the burden of disease.

    *We just don’t have good numbers for various reasons. The process of defining UCOB – underlying cause of death – doesn’t make sense to a lot of people, and there seems to be a financial incentive (not to mention political incentives) to declare a death to be due to Covid-19.

  12. The San Francisco Chronicle says California’s second largest county, San Diego Couty, wants a faster reopening, as they have followed all the protocals and their cases are declining. What I found most interesting in the article was the softening of the description of the virus…”For most people,the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms such as fever or cough that clear up in 2 to 3 weeks. But for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems it can cause severe illness, including pneumonia and death.” I will admit death is a pretty severe illness, but I don’t think we had been hearing the words …”most, mild,moderate and some.” And from the same edition of the SFC, there are aerial photos of the great plaza in front of SF city hall and the Asian-Pacific Museum, showing a city sponsored homeless encampment, all laid out in paint line squares, in what was once a great tourist destination.

  13. anonimo11 says:

    I see nothing here Steve. They started testing those who had shown symptoms. It is no wonder that 60% are showing antibodies. It is not a random sample of the population. They also started at Nembro, which, due to three institutions for the elderly being present, has a huge total number of dead. I guarantee that this test will give high mortality, perhaps even close to 10%, whereas the other 59 measurements average 0.37%. It is basically CFR masqueraded as IFR.

    • Agree: Yancey Ward
  14. On the other hand, we have no proof that these 60% figures in these 3 towns are due to herd immunity. They could be more due to the ferocious lockdowns imposed upon these towns last winter.

    My guess is that they would have burned through even a bit more without the lockdown. But just a guess.

    In any case, herd immunity threshold depends (1-1/R0) one what your basic reproduction number is which depends on your population and cultural practices.

    Italy is an older population (probably not just more likely to die, but more likely to get infected) and more touchy feely than white America–though we’ve gotten way, way more “huggy” during my lifetime–and with more inter-generational families.

    So whatever the number is for Italy it is probably lower for America–hard to be sure with our “vibrant” minorities. But definitely will be lower for white suburban America. I think 60% is a pretty good guess.

    And the other factor–world-wide–is that no one is behaving like they did a few months ago. And even as things cool down, no one is going back to 2019 behavior–perhaps forever. This would push the HIT number even lower.

    However herd immunity isn’t some magic bullet. The infection isn’t dead out. You can still get sick if you aren’t personally immune, and you have contact with someone infected.

    And in a few years as immunity fades in some people, and mutation and selection drives the circulating virus toward one that fewer are immune to … up pop new outbreaks.

    Absent some sort of absolute killer vaccine, the WuFlu is going to be with us for a long, long time like the common cold.

    And to me a critical public policy need is to drive the circulating virus to be less virulent and lethal.

    We are quite capable of doing this. But it involves actual logic, planning, and execution–so far beyond the hysteric nonsense–“quarantines don’t work”, “masks don’t help”–we’ve gotten from the CDC.

    We are quite capable of doing this

    • Replies: @Redman
  15. Glaivester says: • Website

    The thing to understand about herd immunity is that it does not mean that the disease cannot be caught or cannot spread. It means that the disease cannot sustain itself through spread.

    If a disease has an Ro of 4, herd immunity is 75% (herd immunity occurs when Re = 1; Re = Ro * (1-i) where i = the proportion of people with immunity). If the actual rate of immunity is 90%, then Ro – 0.4. If you introduce 10,000 people with the disease into that community, then they can be expected to infect 4000 people, who can infect 1600 people, etc., and ultimately about 6,667 people will get the disease before it dies out.

    Herd immunity overshoot occurs whenever the Re = 1 point is reached while a lot of people still have the disease, because there are still enough cases to spread the disease while it is declining.

    The real advantage of herd immunity is that a few sick people cannot start an epidemic, because the disease will die out too rapidly. It does not mean that the disease cannot occur at all, nor does it mean that the disease magically disappears if herd immunity is reached during the epidemic.

    Also, small-scale outbreaks are still possible if the population averages herd immunity but it is not evenly distributed, or if someone catches the disease who has an abnormally high Ro (i.e. a superspreader). But again, this would be limited to those populations, and a superspreader would only give one generation of infections; that he would infect another superspreader is unlikely (superspreaders would have to be rare; by definition you cannot have 10% of the population have more than 10 times the average of anything).

    • Agree: Yancey Ward
    • Replies: @anon
  16. gary says:

    iSteve is on the payola from Soros aka the Fed. Feeding us misinformation

    and pablum daily. He’s broke, old, and commuting between his bedroom and

    home “office.” A pathetic version of his former self, which was even then a pussy-footed

    whimp. His children will curse his name for selling out his race, country, and

    them for a few sheikels. Our parastic, genocidal rulers are cannablizing what’s

    left of the USS Titanic before using the Kung Flu Scam to exterminate

    European-American Gentiles.

    Good job, Judas.

    • Agree: Je Suis Omar Mateen
    • LOL: ic1000
  17. At the beginning of this pandemic, “curve management” was meant to prevent the COVID cases from overwhelming hospitals and associated facilities. This would save lives in obvious ways. But the worst hit areas like NYC didn’t seem that close to hitting that point. For example they had empty hospital ships, Javits center, etc. NYC is maybe 20% (?) positive, so 1/3 of the way to herd immunity without unduly stressing their medical systems. Even less concerning if they had protected nursing homes better.

    So the “Let ‘Er Rip” crowd had something of a point. If the virus had been burning in a distanced but open NYC they would probably be at herd immunity, and maybe without overwhelming hospital systems.

  18. Erik L says:

    My read on that difficult translation is that the 750 people were quarantined for either symptoms or a positive family member but had never been tested for active infection themselves. So the 60% having developed antibodies is not surprising. The general population of people who never had symptoms should be much lower on this test

  19. There are two local optima containment strategies for R0 (which determines effective herd immunity):

    1) Controlled let’er rip, limited by the body-count.
    2) Crush the curve to get into containment (contact-tracing with enforced quarantine) rather than mitigation.

    The only model I’ve seen out there exposing these two optima is Arguably Wrong’s, at Epidemiological modeling – costs of controls.

    • Replies: @res
  20. As long as we’re keeping track of numbers, let’s not forgot this number:

    Number of people who have lost their jobs since February 21,418,000

    This number will certainly rise. In addition, it doesn’t include the millions of businesses (and business owners) who will go bust, destroying years, maybe decades, of work.

    We have absolutely no idea what we’re gaining from the lock down, but we know the costs. Perhaps these 21 million people deserve a bit of your sympathy as well.

    • Agree: Federalist, MBlanc46
  21. If this is true, it is very good news. I don’t have confirmed/dead/recovered on Bing for either of those towns or Bergamo, only for Lombardy.

    Lombardy – 82,904 confirmed, 15,116 dead.

    15,116/82,904 = 18% CFR. That is 3 times higher than a lot of other places. New York state is 6.5%. Spain is 10%. Strikes me that there probably wasn’t a lot of testing in Italy early on. Also, New York State is way worse than Spain per capita, but Spain is a higher CFR probably because they’ve done much less testing and started testing later into their epidemic.

    Comparing deaths per day per capita throughout the infection, CFR does not represent deaths per capita. New York is highest and Italy lowest in deaths per capita. The CFR is reversed, Italy highest, New York lowest. Probably differences in testing picking up mild or asymptomatic cases that drop CFR.

    82,904 confirmed cases / 10,088,484 people in Lombardy = 0.8% of the population infected. Most places are 0.4-0.6%. New York, however, is worse, 362,845 cases / 19,453,561 = 1.8% of the state confirmed infected.

    But under this antibody scenario, 10,088,484 * .61 = 6,153,975 infected.

    15,116 dead / 6,153,975 infected = 0.25% IFR.

    1/.0025 = 400. 400 * 22,843 dead in New York = 9,137,200 implied infected in NY.
    9,137,200 / 19,453,561 = 47% infected.

  22. Another distraction from the real question: why are the restrictions in place so arbitrary?

    Only a few states continue to ban gym access while fewer than 6 states continue to ban haircuts. I’m sure Steve can give us math to explain why it’s necessary.

    • Replies: @anon
    , @Je Suis Omar Mateen
  23. Using those numbers I put above, (deaths * 400) / total pop:

    Lombardy, Italy – 61%
    New York State – 47%
    Spain – 24%
    Italy – 21%
    Sweden – 15%
    California – 3%

  24. botazefa says:

    Do we know enough about N. Italy wuflu to be able to extrapolate when it arrived in Northern Italy based upon the current 60% antibody rate?

    How fast can a flu-like virus infect 60% of a population?

  25. Polynikes says:

    There is a lot of focus here on herd immunity without even knowing if this is the mechanism by which the virus will end. It is just assumed here that we need herd immunity like we have for the measles or polio. But why? Is this disease similar to them? Unlikely.

    Coronaviruses are sharply seasonal. They appear, based on serial interval and secondary infection risk, to have similar transmission potential to influenza A(H3N2) in the same population.

    (emphasis mine)

    https://academic.oup.com/jid/advance-article/doi/10.1093/infdis/jiaa161/5815743

    This thing came of it’s own accord and is currently leaving of it’s own accord. Seasonality seems to be pretty key here–way more-so than any herd immunity effect. Herd immunity would not even work if it mutates. Much like we do not acquire herd immunity from the “flu” or the “common cold.” Apparently, we do for the specific virus each season, but then it mutates and comes back next winter and herd immunity is largely irrelevant for eliminating what we colloquially call the “flu” or the “common cold.”

    Nobody knows the mechanism by which covid-19 operates yet. The picture becomes clearer, but can pinpoint it for sure. It could mutate and come back stronger or weaker next year. It could just come back on it’s own, and thus herd immunity comes into play. Or it could just not come back at all like previous SARS scares.

    The serological tests helped us get a good handle on IFR early on. They can help us assess herd immunity. But herd immunity could be largely irrelevant paradigm. Stay calm; and carry on.

    • Replies: @res
    , @Thoughts
  26. Well, the criterion of herd immunity is whether the disease stops spreading (significantly), presumably without measures in place.

    Have these towns reached herd immunity thus defined? Are more infections occurring? Are measures still in place?

  27. res says:

    On the other hand, we have no proof that these 60% figures in these 3 towns are due to herd immunity. They could be more due to the ferocious lockdowns imposed upon these towns last winter.

    That is a good question. We might be able to make a better guess given data for the infection trajectory (anyone have some for those Italian towns?). But it is hard to be sure. Basically we have two factors reducing Re below R0.

    1. The increase in infections towards the HIT (Herd Immunity Threshold). My understanding is that should cause a gradual decrease in Re. This page has a good intro to R0 and Re:
    https://www.cebm.net/covid-19/when-will-it-be-over-an-introduction-to-viral-reproduction-numbers-r0-and-re/
    They present an equation Re = R0 × (1 – Pi) where Pi is the proportion of the population who are immune at that time. (anyone know the origin or validity of this equation?)
    Here it is graphically.

    2. Countermeasures should reduce R0 towards some new Re. In theory this can be estimated by agent based models (like the Imperial model), but I think using empirical estimates would be better. Good estimates would make it much easier to tune countermeasures. As well as helping us evaluate their relative cost/benefit tradeoffs.

    Also note that R0 is a bit of a fuzzy concept because it varies by time (seasonality) and place (local conditions without interventions).

    Another important point to make is ending infections by hitting the HIT has some subtleties. Glaivester discussed overshoot above. I see two contributors there.
    A. The HIT will not be hit at the same time everywhere (and the HIT value will not be the same everywhere).
    B. There is a lag between new infections and immunity. I usually use the five day incubation period, but the period until immunity is achieved may be better.

    Given all of this I think it is useful to look at the epidemic progression as a trajectory over time through a space of Re, % infected, and % immune. This would help capture the % infected and % immune lag as well as showing how Re changes with countermeasures, % immune, and seasonality. I think something like this could help better assess the trajectory of the Italian cases, but I doubt we have data to do anything other than hypotheticals.

    The reason I include both % (ever) infected and % immune is those are measuring different things. % infected is the final variable we care about, while % immune gives us the current HIT. And their difference gives us % infectious (modulo incubation period) which is another important variable.

    Another important point to raise here. The ideal I see would be to achieve HI by overshooting a light lockdown influenced Re ending up at a % immune which will (barely) exceed the HIT once lockdowns are removed and we are at winter R0 levels.

    Those exact numbers are unknowable, but hopefully this makes clear that overshoot does not automatically mean a large increase over the final HIT.

    Then there is the whole non-homogeneity (Tom Hanks?) discussion:
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/how-high-is-herd-immunity-level/#comment-3905394

    P.S. I think this paper is a useful look at herd immunity in the context of vaccines which also has some application here:
    “Herd Immunity”: A Rough Guide
    https://academic.oup.com/cid/article/52/7/911/299077

    • Replies: @qwop
  28. Mr. Sailer,

    I have not seen you mention any analysis of this disease from an evolutionary perspective—that is, from the perspective of the evolving disease, which has obvious consequences for a strategy. A disease that incapacitates it victims tends to not spread because the victims are immobile. A less lethal/incapacitating disease will tend to spread throughout the population, which may or may not develop herd immunity. In this latter case, even if herd immunity does not develop (because immunity in infected individuals simply does not develop), the disease remains relatively less lethal/incapacitating.

    When people are concentrated such that movement of victims is not required for transmission (say, in the field hospitals of WW1), the opportunity exists for more lethal variants of the pathogen to develop. The more virulent pathogen thereafter may reenter the general population, and wreak havoc. If infected but not yet deceased members of the formerly concentrated population among whom the lethal strain developed are dispersed throughout the general population, the havoc will also be dispersed and wide spread. This would explain differing lethality numbers and even infection rates in different areas (infection rates being based on low reporting of people who are infected with a mild strain).

    The appropriate strategy would be to seek to prevent the evolution of more lethal strains, and control the movement of people who may be infected by it. It appears to be unknown whether infection entails lasting individual immunity, which is necessary for so called herd immunity (a term really only appropriate in cases where such lasting immunity exists from a working vaccine, and a politicized somewhat deceptive term to start with), but even if not, it may be best to allow the wide spread of the less lethal strain, in the context of a “competition” for survival among more and less lethal strains of the virus.

  29. res says:

    One interesting thing about the Italian data is it directly contradicts something Ioannidis said in his latest paper:
    The infection fatality rate of COVID-19 inferred from seroprevalence data
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.05.13.20101253v1

    An interesting observation is that even under congested circumstances, like cruise ships, aircraft carriers or homeless shelter, the proportion of people infected does not get to exceed 20-45%.35,36 Similarly, at a wider population level, values ~33% are the maximum values documented to-date. It has been suggested37,38 that differences in host susceptibility and behavior can result in herd immunity at much lower prevalence of infection in the population than originally expected. COVID-19 spreads by infecting certain groups more than others because some people have much higher likelihood of exposure. People most likely to be exposed also tend to be those most likely to spread for the same reasons that put them at high exposure risk. In the absence of random mixing of people, the epidemic wave may be extinguished even with relatively low proportions of people becoming infected. Seasonality may also play a role in the dissipation of the epidemic wave

    Here is the abstract.

    Objective To estimate the infection fatality rate of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) from data of seroprevalence studies.
    Methods Population studies with sample size of at least 500 and published as peer-reviewed papers or preprints as of May 12, 2020 were retrieved from PubMed, preprint servers, and communications with experts. Studies on blood donors were included, but studies on healthcare workers were excluded. The studies were assessed for design features and seroprevalence estimates. Infection fatality rate was estimated from each study dividing the number of COVID-19 deaths at a relevant time point by the number of estimated people infected in each relevant region. Correction was also attempted accounting for the types of antibodies assessed.
    Results Twelve studies were identified with usable data to enter into calculations. Seroprevalence estimates ranged from 0.113% to 25.9% and adjusted seroprevalence estimates ranged from 0.309% to 33%. Infection fatality rates ranged from 0.03% to 0.50% and corrected values ranged from 0.02% to 0.40%.
    Conclusions The infection fatality rate of COVID-19 can vary substantially across different locations and this may reflect differences in population age structure and case-mix of infected and deceased patients as well as multiple other factors. Estimates of infection fatality rates inferred from seroprevalence studies tend to be much lower than original speculations made in the early days of the pandemic.

    Not sure what to make of all that, but someone needs to point him to those Italian towns. My guess is age explains the discrepancy. The Italian towns were older than average and most of his examples skewed younger (or healthier). I would not be surprised if Italian sociability increased the Re and HIT as well.

    • Replies: @AnotherDad
    , @vhrm
  30. Gongtao says:

    Google is translating “tamponi” as “tampons” but in this case it refers to the swabs used in testing for the virus. Steve, if you want help translating Italian, I am available.

  31. Jack D says:

    but I don’t think [Google Translate is] fully optimized for Italian, judging by that second sentence.

    Translation is always difficult but AI has made computer translation much better than in the past. But it will require some hand tuning for the time being.

    The Italian original states:

    Intanto si aspetta un macchinario da 2mila tamponi al giorno

    In this instance, tamponi means swabs but the computer can be forgiven for translating tamponi as tampon since AI is based on statistical frequency. Perhaps a better AI would have understood from the context of the article that they were talking about swabs and not tampons.

    Macchinario is more subtle. Machinery is really the correct translation but in this case the writer was using it metaphorically to mean “processing”. I don’t know when if ever we will get an AI that understand such metaphorical subtleties. Even a human who has studied another language for many years can miss such subtleties.

    • Agree: Johann Ricke
  32. Anon7 says:

    OT: iSteve readers should consider this plea to aid persons falsely accused of witchcraft during the age of Covid-19:

    “Alleged witches are still killed today, in 2020”, says humanist anti-witchcraft activist Leo Igwe

    Advocacy for Alleged Witches (AfAW) is a project founded by Leo Igwe with the financial support of Humanists International. Its goal is to “use compassion, reason, and science to save lives of those affected by superstition”, especially now that some African countries are registering an increase of witchcraft accusations related to the coronavirus pandemic.

    In a continent like Africa with weak economies, the stress due to the coronavirus pandemic and other health issues nudge people to take a leap of faith, to engage in witchcraft allegations and suspicions of demonic possession.

    To make things worse, some Christian missionary groups have been adding to the problem and complicating efforts to end witch persecution in the region.

    Those who suffer from witchcraft related abuses the most, are likely to belong to already vulnerable or marginalised groups such as women, children or people with disabilities. Their vulnerable status in their communities makes them easy scapegoats for all kind of problems including illnesses, misfortunes or simply poverty.

    A 2010 Gallup Poll which was conducted in 18 countries showed the pervasiveness of the belief in witchcraft in sub Saharan Africa including 95 percent in Ivory Coast, 80 percent in Senegal, 77 percent in Ghana and Mali. Alleged witches are stoned to death in Malawi, lynched in Kenya, set ablaze in Nigeria, banished to ‘witch camps’ in Ghana.

    If you have been targeted as an alleged witch, or if you know of someone who is facing that accusation, please contact Leo Igwe at [email protected].

    It’s one thing to accuse blue state governors of totalitarian ambitions, or government bureaucrat scientists of data tampering, but witchcraft? This is getting serious.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  33. Anonymous[751] • Disclaimer says:

    TODAYS STEVE SAILER POSTING ABOUT STUDIES UPDATE:

    STILL ZERO HEALTHY ADULTS OR CHILDREN THREATENED, STEVE STILL INSISTING ON RUINING THEIR LIVES FOR NO REASON

    • Replies: @Hail
    , @Mike Tre
    , @Mr Mox
  34. Anon[265] • Disclaimer says:

    I’m not sure even 60% herd immunity would help a nursing home. That still leaves 40% of the population without it. If nobody in the nursing home has antibodies and one person carries the virus in, it could still rip through that nursing home and kill a lot of people. What they need is a vaccine.

  35. anon[911] • Disclaimer says:
    @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    Another distraction from the real question: why are the restrictions in place so arbitrary?

    Perhaps what you perceive as “arbitrary” is in part the result of differences.
    Because different places have different peoples resulting in different leadership.
    In the US, because Wyoming’s situation is different from NYC’s.
    Arizona not the same as California. Indiana not the same as Illinois.

    Cuomo only got to kill old people in his own state, not in Vermont or Montana. Federalism is a good thing.

  36. anon[911] • Disclaimer says:

    James Thompson has an informative essay on Uruguay, which has done better than Brazil and possibly better than Argentina. The numbers of infected, sick and dead are very small.

    https://www.unz.com/jthompson/little-uruguay-not-many-dead/

    It looks like Uruguay benefitted not only from southern-hemisphere location but also minimal direct airline connections to places like Wuhan. But also they are a socially coherent and homogeneous country where contact tracing was rather easy. Socio-cultural factors aren’t nice to mention but they do matter.

    As the southern hemisphere rolls into winter it will be a good country to watch.

  37. a machine with 2,000 tampons a day

    Often you have to tamp on vending machines to get them to work. This one obviously needs to be oiled.

  38. @Anon7

    It’s one thing to accuse blue state governors of totalitarian ambitions, or government bureaucrat scientists of data tampering…

    We’re not discussing tampering, but tamponing. Stay on-topic!

    • Replies: @Anon7
  39. @gary

    “He’s broke, old, and commuting between his bedroom and home ‘office’.”

    Are you describing Steve or me? If me, you forgot “and hasn’t changed his underwear since March 8.”

    • LOL: BB753
    • Replies: @Mike Tre
  40. anon[225] • Disclaimer says:
    @Glaivester

    The thing to understand about herd immunity is that it does not mean that the disease cannot be caught or cannot spread

    Very good observation. Tuberculosis, Malaria, HIV/AIDS etc., are all being caught/spread in spite of herd immunity. Eventually, Covid may reach a similar “steady-state”.

  41. Hail says: • Website
    @Anonymous

    Dr. Wodarg has published that Blacks and others with malaria-region ancestry will die at a certain rate from hydroxychloroquine, but non-malaria people will do fine with it.

    He says this may be one key reason for the racial disparity in deaths seen in Western countries.

    • Replies: @ben tillman
  42. It’s instructive that the vast majority of cv19 deaths are male. Mother Nature knows what she is doing. The old boys network of the traditional patriarchy can only be used within repressive male leaders society; Nature doesn’t respect that. She PUNISHES men for their violence & reluctance to grant women the vote!

    • Replies: @anonymous
  43. Anon7 says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    I just formed a mental picture of 19th century whalers hunting female cetaceans with giant swabs, inserting them in their, well, lady parts. Tampooning.

    Avast, ye swabs!

  44. For what it is worth- I took the first stanza of lyrics and had Google translate them into Italian, then took the Italian translation and forced Google to translate it back into English. This is what I got:

    There is a fruit shop on our street
    It is run by a Greek.
    And it keeps good things to eat
    But you should hear him talk!
    When you ask him something, he never answers “no”.
    It “dies” you and takes you to death
    He tells you
    “Yes, we don’t have bananas
    Today we have no bananas.
    We have green beans and onions
    Cabbages and shallots,
    And all kinds of fruit and say
    We have an old style from mah to
    A po-tah-to Long Island
    But yes, we don’t have bananas.
    We don’t have bananas today.

  45. Hail says: • Website
    @Bruno

    lionoftheblogosphere predicts 2,4 million deaths in the USA

    Ridiculous.

    Didn’t he delete his blog during the height of the Corona-Panic?
    It looks like he came back from the doomsday cliff, at least, and has resurfaced.

    We do not need these kinds of wild, Ferguson-style predictions anymore. (We didn’t need them in March, either. I think it’s fair to say, now, that No Response would have been better than what we got.)

    We have Stay-Open Sweden, which is seeing no surge in deaths at all and its epidemic is winding down. Here is the Swedish data for ICU intakes and corona-positive deaths grouped by week since March 1:

    Week 1: 3 ICU-intakes, 0 deaths (i.e., Week 1 of epidemic, to March 7)
    Week 2: 16 ICU-intakes, 5 deaths
    Week 3: 85 ICU-intakes, 44 deaths
    Week 4: 240 ICU-intakes, 190 deaths
    Week 5: 276 ICU-intakes, 451 deaths
    Week 6: 290 ICU-intakes, 665 deaths
    Week 7: 252 ICU-intakes, 660 deaths
    Week 8: 237 ICU-intakes, 544 deaths
    Week 9: 187 ICU-intakes, 533 deaths
    Week 10: 155 ICU-intakes, 477 deaths (to May 9)
    Week 11: ca.125 ICU-intakes, ca.400 deaths (to May 16; final-data pending; full-week estimates based on partial data)

    Total corona-positive deaths in Sweden are on track (observed, actual data; not anyone’s gut-feeling, wild estimates as with the “millions of deaths” Panic-holdouts) to hit 0.05% of total population dying while corona-positive between March and June 2020.

    The natural death rate for the three-month period = 0.225%.

    This means many more Sweden residents will have died natural or other-cause, corona-negative deaths in the same period. There is no indication of Stay-Open Sweden suffering from London- or NYC-style Panic deaths. Total deaths for the year will be in the normal range.

    As for the exact corona death toll, you have to untangle the deaths-with-deaths-from problem. It’s really a three-way problem as I show in another comment. The ambiguous nature of some deaths allows the pro-Panic partisans to continue to fluff up Corona.

    Sweden will not lose much more than 0.02% of total population to the virus, as I have argued (“Stay-Open Sweden set to lose 0.02% of total population to Coronavirus, in line with usual peak flu years“). Just The Flu vindicated yet again.

    LionoftheBlogopshere’s prediction (dated May 19), is for US corona-deaths at 0.75% of population, which going by the Sweden numbers is 35x too high.

    • Replies: @AnotherDad
  46. Hail says: • Website
    @joeyjoejoe

    Herd immunity occurs when the vast majority of us have caught the disease

    It depends entirely on local conditions.

    According to some studies, coronaviruses (which no on cared about until 2020, not even specialists bothered tracking the many in circulation) have a lower threshold than influenza viruses and rhinoviruses.

    Anyway it need not be “the vast majority.” It could be a minority. But it will differ be place and time and other conditions.

    And it only works if we eliminate the crowded events in our society (schools, enclosed mass gatherings like concerts and political rallies, airplanes, lecture halls, and so on).

    Where do you get this idea? How else is herd immunity supposed to occur without people having contact with each other? (As with every flu virus).

  47. res says:
    @DanHessinMD

    As I just commented on an earlier thread, I believe winter herd immunity and summer herd immunity are at two different levels.

    Agreed. And thanks for the link.

    Everywhere we are seeing improvement as summer approaches. Suppose only 30% of the population is susceptible in the warm and humid conditions of summer but 80% of the population is susceptible in cold and dry conditions of winter?

    Then it would look like we are naturally overcoming the disease (as summer approaches) but really we haven’t. That indeed seems to be what we are seeing.

    The second part of that is why I have become so vocal recently.

    The paper I mention under seasonality in this comment:
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/how-high-is-herd-immunity-level/#comment-3905394
    estimates a 40% reduction of R0 in summer (notice how that takes the typical seasonal flu R0 of 1.5 down to 0.9).

    They provide examples for 2 values of COVID-19 R0.

    In figure 5 they assume winter R0 of 2.2 giving a summer R0 of 1.32. Using the equation herd immunity threshold (HIT) = 1 – (1/R0) this gives a summer HIT of 24% and a winter HIT of 55%.

    In figure S13 they assume winter R0 of 2.6 giving a summer R0 of 1.56. This gives a summer HIT of 36% and a winter HIT of 62%.

    Worth mentioning that the Southern Hemisphere will have their flu season before we have ours. So hopefully we will learn something about the seasonality of COVID-19 from their experiences.

  48. res says:
    @James Bowery

    Thanks. That is a useful article. The key issue I have with it is they assume that once COVID-19 is “eliminated” it stays eliminated.

    The claim is that contract tracing will be enough once the strong lockdown has had time to be effective.

    The second local minima is at the far left, right around at R0=0.35, or about what the Chinese managed in Wuhan. This slows the spread of the disease so fast that we rapidly enter back into the much cheaper contact-tracing regime where wholesale lockdowns are no longer necessary. This reduces total cost to $3.11 trillion dollars, half again the cost with only moderate controls.

    I don’t think this is the case. Consider how the US lockdowns are dragging on without having reached that point yet. Then remind ourselves that this is the time of year when the flu season typically ends by itself.

    I think that approach would fail come Fall and Winter (right during election season, what fun).

    What does everyone else think?

    • Replies: @James Bowery
  49. res says:
    @Polynikes

    I think the numbers I posted in an earlier comment give a good answer.

    In short, seasonality is caused by herd immunity. The flu has a low enough R0 (about 1.5) that it drops below 1 during the summer and the HIT (herd immunity threshold) goes to 0. This causes the flu to disappear during the summer (“seasonality”).

    But for COVID-19 the raw R0 is more like 2.5. So it won’t (probably) go under 1 during the summer. Thus the spread slows during the summer (without countermeasures) but does not stop. Then the following winter we are back on the path to the true HIT.

    The key question in all of this is: can we eliminate the virus (and keep it eliminated through the winter) without reaching the HIT?

    I think the answer to that is no. I would be glad to be proven wrong.

    • Replies: @AnotherDad
    , @Polynikes
    , @Hail
  50. @res

    Not sure what to make of all that, but someone needs to point him to those Italian towns. My guess is age explains the discrepancy.

    Age is a factor, but i’d bet mostly it’s just that he’s wrong.

    The infection absolutely exploded on the Diamond Princess and in 12 days was under quarantine and still within a couple more weeks a fifth of the ship was infected.

    An aircraft carrier isn’t a cruise ship but workplace–people doing the same routine, seeing the same people–and is under military discipline so when there’s an outbreak there is no issue clamping down.

    Launch a cruise ship full of young homosexuals with a few infected and i think you’ll find the virus will eventually infect pretty much all of them.

  51. @Anonymous

    I’m absolutely fine with Democrats, media gnomes–but i repeat myself–blacks, ANTIFAs, “nation of immigrants” and “diversity is our strength” spewers, TDSers, etc. etc. foreswearing the Trump treatment.

    That just means supplies will be adequate for those who want it.

    In fact, it should be mandatory. Anti-Trumpers should not be allowed access.

  52. Bernard says:
    @gary

    These type of comments just astound me. Why be so rude?

  53. anonymous[186] • Disclaimer says:

    Why is Cuomo still the Governor?

    • Replies: @anonymous
  54. “Where do you get this idea? How else is herd immunity supposed to occur without people having contact with each other? (As with every flu virus).”

    Its self evident.

    Any population will have two categories with regards to a disease: those who have had it (and are thus immune), and those who haven’t had it (and thus could catch, and spread, it).

    At 90-10, if you are not immune, 10% of the people you bump into could have the disease, and could give it to you. Thus, if you self-isolate, and bump into 10 people this week, you will bump into 1 that could harbor the disease and pass it to you.

    If you are not immune and go to a rock concert with 10,000 people, 1,000 of them could harbor the disease and pass it on to you.

    And so on.

    Herd immunity requires, of course, that most people get the disease-to keep the above numbers down (self isolaters may meet 4 people a week if only 60% have gotten the disease, and concert goers may meet 4,000 if only 60% have gotten the disease, and so on).

    But that is not the ‘appeal’ of herd immunity-particularly for elderly and immunocompromised people. Herd immunity promises-to them-that they can avoid getting the disease (and not end up in the population group that has had it-because they are less likely to survive), and get past self-isolation (so they can fly on airplanes, go to rock concerts, and ride the subway).

    This can’t be done. Most get the disease, and those that don’t have to avoid rock concerts and subways to avoid the currently infected. Herd disease just doesn’t offer them a way out (outside of self-isolation).

    joe

  55. epebble says:

    OT: Wharton school has a Covid policy model that predicts the tradeoff between economic reopening, social distancing and spread of infections/deaths.

    https://budgetmodel.wharton.upenn.edu/issues/2020/5/1/coronavirus-reopening-simulator

    • Replies: @res
  56. anonymous[186] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous

    She got her ass out of the hospital, didn’t she?

    Nothing scientific about this story. Hard to believe from an AM radio station. They usually have teams of medical experts to help analyze the information. You were right to post this for inspection.

    • Replies: @res
  57. Goatweed says:

    Test everyone.

    Isolate and treat the positives.

    Sweden’s death rate swamps the other Nordic countries.

    Seventies stay away from the herd until more information available.

    • Disagree: Hail
    • Replies: @Hail
  58. @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    “Another distraction from the real question: why are the restrictions in place so arbitrary?”

    Because no one in charge actually believes CoronaCold is a big deal.

    If Democratic governors believed this was a deadly illness, the goon squad would stop vehicles at all major intersections and other chokepoints and lock people down hard. That they don’t means it’s not.

  59. res says:
    @epebble

    Interesting. Thanks.

    I am not sure how much benefit there is to only modeling things two months out though. Much of what matters (especially a possible second wave) happens over a longer time frame. Here is their take on that.

    3. How often will the simulator be updated? And why do projections only go two months out?

    We plan on updating the simulator roughly once every week with new data. Because of this frequent update schedule, we only present two-month forecasts. However, we may extend the forecasts as we get more data.

    Do you have any thoughts on the specifics of their model? I don’t have time to really look at it right now.

  60. res says:
    @anonymous

    It’s clearly HCQ FUD. Let’s see how much traction it gets in the media.

  61. @Hail

    Sweden will not lose much more than 0.02% of total population to the virus, as I have argued (“Stay-Open Sweden set to lose 0.02% of total population to Coronavirus, in line with usual peak flu years“). Just The Flu vindicated yet again.

    Just stop dude. You are just embarassing yourself with your attempts to torture numbers to fit your new “it’s just the flu, bro” religion.

    Sweden claims–according to the tracker site i use–3743 WuFlu deaths. Sweden is committed to their strategy as being correct and has no incentive to overcount. Their political incentive is the other way.

    10 millionish people, even my old brain can do that math–.037%. Sweden’s almost double your number–already.

    ~~

    The key idea of Sailer’s blog is “noticing”. Or put a different way, that reality exists independent of what people–including ourselves–want it to be.

    The West already has a religion–Christianity. Take it or leave it.

    All these new fangled religions–“nation of immigrants”, “diversity of our strength”, “gender is social construct” or your “it’s just the flu, bro”–are openly in conflict with logic, reality or both.

    They are … stupid.

  62. @AnotherDad

    All these new fangled religions–“nation of immigrants”, “diversity of our strength”, “gender is social construct” or your “it’s just the flu, bro”–are openly in conflict with logic, reality or both.

    They are … stupid.

    There’s always a few folks who want to extend what i’m saying about numbers/data into a policy position, so for them:

    Note: i’m not dismissing arguments about any particular *policy*. Treating this as “just the flu” and powering through is a reasonable policy position to hold. (I don’t think it means that happens because people do their own thing, but it’s a reasonable policy.) Policy here depends on squaring up various values–economic opportunities lost versus years lost of various quality, plus big questions of our historic Anglo-American liberties. All good stuff to argue about.

    What is ridiculous is claims that the *data* support “just the flu” for the pathology/epidemiology of the Xi Jinping Flu. That claim did not square with what happened in Wuhan, on the Diamond Princess, in Northern Italy and pretty much anywhere else. It is simply nonsense.

    • Replies: @Polynikes
  63. Redman says:
    @AnotherDad

    I’m no scientist, but from what I have read during this lockdown, it seems that viruses usually mutate from more lethal to less so in order to survive. If the virus is too lethal, it kills the host and dies out quicker.

    Should Wuflu continue in the community (like the cold) it may just be ratcheted down to a minor inconvenience and not a real danger to anyone. Irrespective of what our behavior is. That seems to have the most biological plausibility.

    • Replies: @AnotherDad
  64. peterike says:

    JP Morgan weighs in.

    • Replies: @res
    , @Travis
  65. qwop says:
    @res

    They present an equation Re = R0 × (1 – Pi) where Pi is the proportion of the population who are immune at that time. (anyone know the origin or validity of this equation?)

    This equation comes from what in statistical mechanics is called the “mean-field approximation”. It assumes that all people are homogeneously mixed at all times without any bias. The likelihood of person A contacting person B is the same, no matter what the physical distance is between persons A and B, or anything else that may seem pertinent to this probability (such as the disease state of persons A and B).

    If you want to derive this equation within mean-field theory, simply imagine you have a bin of people that you randomly draw from. Each person you draw is exposed to the virus. The probability of drawing a susceptible person that can catch the disease is simply (1 – Pi). Only this fraction is actually transmitted.

    In reality, if person A is infected (and it shows), the other people will tend to avoid person A. To take this into account, you have to “go beyond” the mean-field approximation. (To continue the physics analogy, you might do what is called “perturbation theory”.) Moreover, if A and B are physically separated (such as two different parts of town, or even two different cities), obviously their chance of contacting each other (in the sense of disease transmission) is lower than if they, for instance, share the same household.

    All this talk about physics theories is anyway for naught, because if this pandemic has taught us anything, it is that epidemiology is not an exact science: too many confounding variables and too little in the way of structured parameter-free theories to approach them. That’s why I prefer the simple mean-field equation in discussions.

  66. @res

    The key question in all of this is: can we eliminate the virus (and keep it eliminated through the winter) without reaching the HIT?

    I think the answer to that is no. I would be glad to be proven wrong.

    res,

    I just wanted to compliment you on the consistent high quality of your comments on the Xi Jinping Flu. I think you’ve been the best commenter on bringing in good data, links and making clear, logical arguments from them to try and sort out what’s going on, what’s likely in the future and what sound policy might look like. Whenever i see “res” now, i know–agree or disagree–that the comment will be worth reading.

    Well done.

    • Thanks: res
  67. Mike1 says:

    Everyone’s faith in herd immunity for this disease had better be right.

    • Replies: @Thoughts
  68. Polynikes says:
    @res

    In short, seasonality is caused by herd immunity.

    Seems quite unlikely. That would mean they mutate like clockwork every summer or else they would not come back in the fall. I see nothing to indicate that. The simplest suggestion is that seasonality is the cause. Similarly, if your theory were correct you would occasionally see peak flu months in the summer. We do not. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season.htm

    Thus the spread slows during the summer ….. Then the following winter we are back on the path to the true HIT.

    This is the essence of seasonality. You’ve noticed it, but for some odd reason attributed it to heard immunity. If seasonality has an effect (and it seems it does) then it causes herd immunity for the summer months–not the other way around. We never fully reach permanent herd immunity for the flu and common rhinoviruses. That is why we continue to get it en mass every year (this seems obvious but is worth point out, I guess). This is why the flu vaccine is different very year. According to the CDC this is due to antigenic drift. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/viruses/change.htm

    The 2003 SARS virus came and followed a similar path as covid 19 and never to returned. The 2009 swine flu followed a similar pattern only to return in a diminished capacity in the fall (antigenic drift?) then to disappear for ever. In neither case, was a 60% herd immunity threshold reached. By the CDC’s own numbers 60 million were eventually infected by swine flu in the US, or less than 20% of Americans.

    • Replies: @res
  69. Anon[100] • Disclaimer says:

    OT

    Hilarious inconvenient fact: San Francisco released race data on Covid, and Asians are massively more at risk than blacks or anyone else. Let’s memory hole that one.

    https://www.sfchronicle.com/health/article/why-has-coronavirus-taken-such-a-toll-on-sf-s-15282096.php

    Also, SF LGBT groups are protesting that their data is not being collected and released.

    • Replies: @Hail
  70. Polynikes says:
    @AnotherDad

    That claim did not square with what happened in Wuhan, on the Diamond Princess, in Northern Italy and pretty much anywhere else. It is simply nonsense.

    This is objectively wrong. You point to Italy and New York, which are the high side outliers. There are plenty of low-side outliers to point to, as well. And many have. Those point to it being just about as lethal as the flu or less. The Diamond Princess is one of those when age-adjusted. Others include the USS Roosevelt data, German data, Austrian data, S. Korean data, the multiple local data from California counties to name a few. You continue to stick your head in the sand in regards to those places and fixate on “Northern Italy” (why not Italy as a whole, I have no idea) and NYC.

    The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. Maybe an IFR in the .2 to .4 range–this would be a bad flu season to once in a generation flu season range. But it is no where near the 10 to 50x worse than the flu you were promoting some time ago.

    • Agree: LondonBob
    • Replies: @AnotherDad
    , @Hail
  71. Anon[314] • Disclaimer says:
    @Bruno

    I could pick through his projection in detail, but why bother. LOTB has not exactly covered himself in glory during this thing. Apparently his very confident predictions are obvious, and anyone who disagrees with them is a moron. He ragequit his blog for a while, and seems to be blocking comments now again.

    I’m on the “open up” side of the spectrum, but I give Steve credit for allowing a range of opinions in the comments here. Accurately modeling the progress of this disease and the cultural and economic effects of the response is extraordinarily complex. Maybe impossible.

  72. vhrm says:
    @res

    That Ionnidas paper is like the highlights of all of the iSteve columns on seroprevalance and deaths and their comments; at least from my POV.

    Some of the statements on the the IFR among other-than-old-and-vulnerable notable:

    Similar to Germany, very few deaths in Switzerland have been recorded in non-elderly people, e.g. only 2.5% have occurred in people <60 years old and the IFR in that age-group would be in the range of 0.01%.

    Moreover, even in these locations [with high calculated IFR esp NYC and Bergamo], the IFR for non-elderly individuals without predisposing conditions may remain very low. E.g. in New York City only 0.6% of all deaths happened in people <65 years without major underlying conditions.29 Thus the IFR even in New York City would probably be lower than 0.01% in these people.

    To update yesterdays sketch of how many deaths it takes to get to HIT if we protect the vulnerable to use 0.01% IFR instead of 0.05%:

    (~270M “people <65 years without major underlying conditions" in the US )
    * 40% HIT = 108M infected
    108M infected * 0.01% = 10800 extra deaths among the healthy.

    And this number is still high since we've probably learned things during and since NYC peak about ventilators, about antivirals…
    "convalescent plasma" is being more actively used
    (https://www.wbrz.com/news/olol-encouraged-by-convalescent-plasma-treatment-looking-for-more-donors/ )

    Also: Llama designed but lab produced nano-antibodies! (ok… they're in "pre-clinical trials" and "a year away" for possible theraputic use in people; but it's pretty darned cool if it works out since it could help us out with SARS3+ as well) https://www.wbur.org/commonhealth/2020/05/16/llama-antibodies-can-neutralize-virus

    Back to the Ionnidas meta-analysis paper, i'm also interested to see that he mentions a study from Iran which shows infection rate of 33% ( based on 552 tested in "Gilan" province which had a heavy outbreak.)
    This is the pre-print he's referring to https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.04.26.20079244v1
    That's the largest number in the whole paper.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  73. Con Moto says:

    New book out proving once and for all that immigration restrictionists back in the 20’s had views that are problematic today… or something. If the last line of the review is any indication, it’s a doozy.

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/05/14/arts/battles-over-borders-one-mighty-irresistible-tide/?outputType=amp&__twitter_impression=true

  74. Thoughts says:
    @Polynikes

    Totally agree… if it does come back it will be too weak to cause any damage

    That’s my bet.

    It’s an educated bet based upon its sister diseases

  75. JimB says:
    @Anonymous

    Some people are allergic to quinine. That was the basis of the House M.D. episode, “Living the Dream” where Dr. House suspects the star actor of his favorite medical soap opera has brain cancer.

    Kenya Arnold seems to be fishing for some kind of malpractice payday. Perhaps she’s offended they gave her a 60 cent pill made for Africans instead of the special white people medicine at the back of the pharmacy that costs $500 per pill. Then her doctors refused to fly her first class to the Cleveland Clinic for an emergency spa and pedicure treatment.

    • Replies: @James Speaks
  76. @Redman

    Killing your host is sub-optimal. (Something the “nation of immigrants” people should consider.)

    Selection would seem to work to favor a pathogen that makes you a good spreader. That should push it to keep you ambulatory, but–unfortunately–have symptoms like coughing to spread the pathogen.

    I think we can push it to mutate in this direction, but really hard quarantine of very sick people. Don’t let the very sick infect anyone else.

    Unfortunately our hospital system works the other way, keeping the very sick in contact with a bunch of people including–indirectly–people who themselves are sick and week and prone to infection. Ergo hospital infections are some of the worst.

    What we should have is infectious disease/quarantine hospitals where people sick from infectious disease are isolated from society and each other. Gradually whatever bugs are circulating in the general population are preferentially those that do not tend to make people deathly ill.

    At least, that’s how i think the logic of this plays out.

    • Replies: @Bernard
  77. @Anonymous

    Lay people who aren’t doctors generally aren’t qualified to talk about the effectiveness of medical treatments — and that doesn’t change just because it’s her own medical treatment. She probably doesn’t really know whether her “heart stopped,” whatever that means. She also doesn’t know how a Covid case is supposed to progress from the stage when she got the drug, so how can she know whether the HCQ had a positive effect.

    Her doctor, however, has apparently seen enough to think it’s effective. And she’s still alive. So maybe she shouldn’t complain.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  78. Thoughts says:
    @Mike1

    No herd immunity

    Disease dies out on its own

  79. @Bruno

    I don’t read the guy–i did a bit when he was Half Sigma. But my understanding from others here is he’s been a hysteric the whole time.

    Getting these numbers would require:
    — 240 million infected for it to sputter out at herd immunity
    — 1% IFR
    or something similar.

    Both of these numbers are too high.

    IFR of 1%ish might be there in some towns in Northern Italy where a bunch of elderly folks picked up huge viral loads from their children and grandchildren they lived with. The US has a younger age structure and does not have that inter-generational living pattern. Plus people are smarter now about this thing and would still be so even in a “let it rip” scenario. And other antibody test samples that we have coming in, are more in line with my lower guess around 0.5% IFR.

    I’m skeptical of the 240 required for it to sputter out as well. But that’s more arguable.

    No vaccine, not markedly improved treatment regime and numbers like
    — 170-240m infected
    — 600k-1.5m dead (again, heavily skewed to elderly and/or serious health conditions)
    are at least plausible–within the realm of possibility.

    And realistically these would probably be distributed over the next several flu seasons.

    What i expect will actually happen is various vaccines–of at least some level of effectiveness–and improved therapies–will push those numbers down significantly and the deaths will be spread out as people take precautions.

    ~~

    Now, let’s talk something important. Getting Trump off the dime on immigration moratorium?

  80. res says:
    @peterike

    Anyone have access to the report? The differences are small and have occurred as we move into late spring. If seasonality is a factor that should have reduced Re during the period in question.

    I would take that graph as indicating rough parity (a big enough deal!) with the decline likely being noise.

    I am also skeptical there has been enough time (given lags) and good enough data to get two significant digit estimates of post-lockdown R0. Consider the IHME data for CO:
    https://covid19.healthdata.org/united-states-of-america/colorado
    and be sure to notice the uptick in confirmed infections over the last few days. It will be interesting to see if that persists as a trend.

    To be clear, I think starting to open up is a good idea (notice that CO ended only the most onerous 2 of the 5 measures IHME tracks). Just don’t take that graph too seriously.

  81. anonymous[134] • Disclaimer says:
    @Ponce Faggy

    Thank you, Duck. I dig your new moniker.

    • Replies: @James Speaks
  82. anonymous[134] • Disclaimer says:
    @anonymous

    He is protected by the press. My hometown rag in central NY has at least 3-4 flattering articles about him every day.

  83. Unusually candid take by an establishment figure in the UK, Robert Skidelsky.

    https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/governments-cannot-admit-covid19-herd-immunity-objective-by-robert-skidelsky-2020-05

    Governments cannot openly admit that the “controlled easing” of COVID-19 lockdowns in fact means controlled progress toward so-called herd immunity to the virus. Much better, then, to pursue this objective silently, under a cloud of obfuscation, and hope that a vaccine will arrive before most of the population gets infected.

    • Replies: @res
    , @utu
  84. @Polynikes

    Poly, you’re the one whose confused.

    The Diamond Princess is one of those when age-adjusted.

    Go age adjust the Diamond Princess to this Hail bozo’s 0.02% IFR.

    Good luck.

    The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. Maybe an IFR in the .2 to .4 range–this would be a bad flu season to once in a generation flu season range. But it is no where near the 10 to 50x worse than the flu you were promoting some time ago.

    I’ve been saying–pretty repeatedly, i could probably show you 20 comments now–0.5% IFR for the Xi Jinping Special. 0.2-0.3% was the most optimistic thing i said. 1% strikes me as the upper limit–what falls out in Italy with a more elderly age structure and getting hit hard and early.

    Party of our disagreement is your confusion seems to be the mortality from the flu. Even 1 in 1000 people don’t die of “the flu”. No “bad flu” season in decades has cracked even 0.1%. Some of those CDC numbers are hype to raise awareness and get people vaccinated. They don’t test everyone coming in with pneumonia for the flu. And they don’t test bodies. Another old guy died of pneumonia during flu season–ship it!

    An routine mediocre flu year is something like 80 million people get some strain of the flu and 8000 die. All of them either very old or babies/toddlers with not fully functioning immune systems or some other issue. 0.1%–that’s my 50x. A really bad flu year with a new strain might be able to pop 5x of that. (Even many of the new strains are a bust–ex. H1N1 in ’09.) The only flu year during my life that gets within shouting distance of this is 1957. And we have better medical care, are better at treating pneumonia now. (I.e. ’57 would not even be ’57 today.)

    These inflated flu death totals really are just “you gotta die of something and some old people get cold and/or flu get pneumonia and die. That isn’t remotely what has happened with Xi Jinping’s Special this year. The people are old, but they weren’t in death’s waiting room. (I’ve seen the sort of “flu death” people at my dad’s retirement home/nursing home. You can tell when they are “ready” … and those people aren’t the old folks going on cruises.)

    Go ahead, the flu is around every year and i see a few cruise ships heading out several days a week. (Used to see–now they sit off the coast, giant windsocks.) Remind me of the cruise ship that got hammered like the Diamond Princess–80 something hospitalizations, 14 dead, some folks still in the hospital months later–by “the flu”.

  85. @Hypnotoad666

    Lay people who aren’t doctors…

    I’ve never laid anyone who was a doctor, though I believe one became one later on.

    Good advice, though, if a tad cynical. Like “Sleep Labour, marry Tory”.

  86. res says:
    @Polynikes

    Seems quite unlikely.

    Was my argument not clear?

    Similarly, if your theory were correct you would occasionally see peak flu months in the summer.

    I guess not. If Re for the flu drops below 1 (as my theory stated) you are not going to see peak flu months during the summer.

    Perhaps we are getting tangled up with different definitions of “seasonality?” I thought about expanding on this in my original comment but decided it would be more confusing than clarifying. Let’s give it a try.

    The causality I am proposing is:
    time of year -> changing Re (higher in winter, lower in summer) -> changing HIT (lower in summer, higher in winter) -> spread ebbs and flows

    I take “flu seasonality” to be the spread ebbing and flowing. The final result in that causal chain. Arguably you could instead use “seasonality” to simply mean time of year. In which case, yes I consider time of year the primary cause. But decreased Re and herd immunity are the mechanisms by which that influences the infection dynamics.

    Since the summer HIT is below 0 the flu always dies out in summer (an unusual flu with a higher R0 might not drop below 0, just as I don’t think COVID-19 will).

    Leaving aside the word “seasonality,” does that causal chain seem reasonable? If not, what would you propose instead?

    We never fully reach permanent herd immunity for the flu and common rhinoviruses. That is why we continue to get it en mass every year (this seems obvious but is worth point out, I guess).

    It is both obvious and worth being explicit about. There are multiple things going on here. First of all, the raw flu R0 is about 1.5 giving a HIT of 33%. This is on the low side to begin with and may be lower still in practice due to non-homogeneity.

    Second, as I understand things, the typical annual flu strains are mutations of a variety of base strains (H1N1 and H3N2 being two of the better known, originating in 1918 and 1968 respectively) with there being some cross-immunity between closely related strains. This cross-immunity should reduce the HIT. BTW, cross-immunity is why the novel strains are typically more severe than their echoes. And why sometimes you can see that in the age group outcomes if younger people are naive to the major strain involved.

    So I think the flu dies out each year due to Re declining through a combination of approaching the original HIT and time of year. Both factors reduce Re and once that gets below 1 the flu season winds down.

    Then the next year we get a slightly mutated version of one of the various major strains out there (picking which of these to include in the annual flu shot matters) and we start the whole process all over again.

    Does that make sense? If not, please help me understand why not.

    The 2003 SARS virus came and followed a similar path as covid 19 and never to returned. The 2009 swine flu followed a similar pattern only to return in a diminished capacity in the fall (antigenic drift?) then to disappear for ever. In neither case, was a 60% herd immunity threshold reached. By the CDC’s own numbers 60 million were eventually infected by swine flu in the US, or less than 20% of Americans.

    Those are good comparisons. In a comment last month I recommended this 538 article.
    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/why-did-the-world-shut-down-for-covid-19-but-not-ebola-sars-or-swine-flu/

    Remember, 60% is not a magic figure for all diseases. The HIT depends on R0 and 60% is the HIT calculated from a simple SEIR model as HIT = 1 – 1/R0. Which is 60% for an R0 of 2.5.

    The 538 article gives an R0 of 1.4-1.6 for swine flu (which was a variant of the 1918 H1N1 virus). So that 20% compares to the 33% HIT estimate for R0 = 1.5 I gave above. Which seems fairly reasonable given non-homogeneity reduces the HIT compared to the simple SEIR model. The reason swine flu turned out not to be a crisis is the IFR was relatively low.

  87. @AnotherDad

    All these new fangled religions… “gender is social construct”

    Gender is not a social construct. It’s a linguistic one. Which is why we no longer have it in English, other than vestigially, for pronouns.

    I have never seen a “gender” in the real world. Ain’t no such animal.

  88. res says:
    @PiltdownMan

    Thanks. It is encouraging to see that from an establishment figure.

  89. Bernard says:
    @AnotherDad

    There’s a very simple and obvious solution to keeping the virus from the most vulnerable. Quarantine them, but MUCH, MUCH more importantly, quarantine their caregivers. In large facilities the turnover in shifts practically guarantees the virus will make its way into the population. Set up trailers in each and offer combat pay for those willing to live onsite. It astounds me why this isn’t being done.

    Instead, we spend (borrow) trillions of dollars for people to stay home and destroy our way of life.

  90. Hail says: • Website
    @Anonymous

    Didn’t you get the memo that Corona-Kawasaki disease threatens children? Or has that narrative been abandoned yet?

    Or was it “Corona linked to Mystery Disease Striking Children”? I’m slightly behind.

    The pro-Panic media is on the case. Don’t give up the Panic, people.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  91. Hail says: • Website
    @Goatweed

    Test everyone.

    Waste of resources. Perpetuates destructive Panic for no reason.

    Test Everyone is pure demagoguery.

  92. Hail says: • Website
    @AnotherDad

    10 millionish people, even my old brain can do that math–.037%. Sweden’s almost double your number–already.

    You do understand that some portion of the deaths are “deaths with” and not “deaths from,” right?

    If not, I think there is no purpose in further discussion.

    But of course you do understand it. So why ignore it?

    With Sweden’s deaths curve declining, they are on the way to a final-epidemic total in the 5000 range, total corona-positive all-cause-all-condition deaths, or <0.05% of population. We know that only a portion of these are true deaths from the virus, that is to say that indications are that most of these deaths would have died anyway in 2020 (at least half in Sweden were nursing home patients, for one thing). This is not rocket science. This is not a trick. Given that, the final total will be an additional mortality hit of around +0.02%. There will be no appreciable full-year increase in mortality in Sweden. 2020 final mortality could be 0.90%–>0.92%, which is in the range of normal fluctuations.

    And the point stands to be made again: If you aggressively test for any given virus, literally any flu or cold virus, you could force a pattern whereby any of them are big-time killers. AnotherDad, sorry but you have fallen for the hoax.

    It’s time to stop this madness. Seriously. Taking this seriously was a serious blunder. A lot of people made the mistake. It’s okay. But it’s time to get off the ledge.

  93. Steve,

    I think you should move off of UNZ. It was fine when it was just you and two schizos; now it is you and two hundred schizos. Plus Ron is dragging your down with his pro-China turn. It discredits your work to be associated with this stuff. It’s hard to link your articles to people who are in the process of awakening now because they invariably say “what is this stupid website that promotes every dumb conspiracy theory known to mankind.”

    • Replies: @Alden
  94. @JimB

    It was her hair. They wanted to touch her hair.

  95. Mike Tre says:
    @SunBakedSuburb

    Are you using the underwear as a mask?

  96. Mike Tre says:
    @Anonymous

    Fear is a hellova drug.

  97. @Hail

    Don’t give up the Panic, people.

    Here’s some light reading while we wait:

  98. Hail says: • Website
    @res

    But for COVID-19 the raw R0 is more like 2.5. So it won’t (probably) go under 1 during the summer

    I believe you are making a key mistake here. You are treating the rate (which is in fact a hypothetical value) like an entity in itself. The transmission rate for any virus of this kind will always be dynamic, always reacting to local conditions, and subject to many other uncertainties (on which, more at the end of this comment from Dr. John Lee of the UK).

    The transmission rate will also always look exponential at the start, then peak, then begin to fade, then disappear in recognizable form, the epidemic over, in a period of a few weeks in a given locality. This is true with every novel virus (and every year has novel viruses). This implies a shifting R0. In this sense, this virus is exactly the same as every other flu virus, except that the panicked interventions interrupted the process in many places.

    This calculated R0 rate for Germany for March might be of use, conceptually, here:
    __
    The (retroactively calculated) rate for Germany shows evidence of R0 moving through its natural peak and starting its decline process before major changes in behavior were observed — though the changes in behavior did put continuing downward pressure on it. (Those interested in the matter can see my reasoning here: “The coronavirus transmission rate (“R0”) fell long before the Lockdown orders; What caused the decline?“) And those private changes in behavior pushed it to <1 long before the Lockdown was in effect, which is the most obvious lesson of that graph.

    That graph from the German health ministry is retroactively calculated. There are serious problems with calculating an R0 rate beforehand, and making major decisions on it, given the major uncertainties.

    As of this writing, May 20, there are certainly many localized areas in Stay-Open Sweden where the virus has stopped transmitting entirely due to the herd immunity mechanism. Stockholm was first, others have followed. The whole country will be there before long. It's over.

    ______________

    Here is Dr. John Lee, professor and recently retired advisor to the UK’s NHS. As a (retired) private citizen, he has come out as a major Corona-Lockdown critic since late March and Herd-Immunity advocate. (Another of those pesky credentialed/experienced experts who don’t line up behind the Corona Pied Piper.) Here he is writing on R0:

    (From article in the Daily Mail dated May 16: Ministers are pinning everything on the ‘R’ rate but DR JOHN LEE says it’s less reliable than a weather forecast.)

    R is an artificial construct and not even a number we know with any certainty.

    R is calculated using mathematical modelling – and the models used have repeatedly been found to reach untenable and frankly wrong-headed conclusions.

    As a former professor of pathology, and someone who has had a long research career, I am very familiar with critical assessment of data.

    And in the case of R, I can tell you that this is not a strong enough number to bear the burden of any Government policy, let alone a policy with the magnitude of lockdown.

    In fact, the epidemiological models that generate R are probably less reliable than long-range weather forecasts. Let me explain.

    There is a tendency to give models too much respect because they rely on mathematics that few can follow.

    But any model, no matter how complex, is only as good as its data and assumptions.

    Here is one key problem with the forward-looking R0 estimates:

    [N]ew work just published in the prestigious journal Cell shows that coronaviruses causing the common cold give rise to immune cells [T cells] that also react to Sars-Cov-2, the virus responsible for Covid-19.

    These cells were present in 40 to 60 per cent of people who had not been exposed to the new virus. If they confer a degree of immunity to it, as seems likely, they would blow calculations of R out of the water.

    This would also explain another incorrect assumption, that the virus would ‘rip through’ the population, infecting 80 per cent of us, when in fact it seems to be levelling out at about 20 per cent.

    And here is Dr. Lee on the pro-Panic side’s push to depress R0 to below 1.0:

    The best way to deal with the virus is not lockdown, but to encourage R above one for the fit and healthy.

    If they go out and catch the virus it builds herd immunity, bringing forward the time when R heads back below one and the virus largely peters out.

    The Government and their scientific advisors are heading up a blind alley with their emphasis on R.

    They seem to be grasping for spurious certainty from a modelling output that cannot supply it.

    • Agree: Yancey Ward
    • Replies: @Alden
    , @res
  99. Hail says: • Website
    @Anon

    San Francisco Chronicle article, dated May 20:

    Eighteen of the 36 people who had perished from COVID-19 in San Francisco as of Sunday were Asian American, even though the group makes up just over a third of the city’s population.

    Small sample size.

    But wait a minute. Only thirty-six deaths in San Francisco?

    Population in 2020 estimated 896,000.

    36 / 896,000 = 0.004%.

    Meanwhile, the natural death rate in the same circa 2.5-month period, second week of March to third week of May, would be ca. 0.2%. Even if every one of those corona-positive San Francisco deaths were a genuine death from the virus and no other contributing cause (unlikely), that raises the total death rate from 0.200% to 0.204%. I.e., a laughable washout as far as virus apocalypses go.

    And that, friends, is the real story, the dog that didn’t bark. If this report of 36 total deaths is right, the real headline ought to be: “San Francisco remarkably lightly hit by virus, raising serious questions about need for lockdown; Our reporters ask the tough questions!.”

    Of course, they don’t run anything like that. They won’t. (The people ought not to know, for their own good of course. Stop the spread of the Corona-Blasphemy.)

    Instead, they run this story: “Apocalypse Virus active in San Francisco! Asians hardest hit! Heavy toll! Experts baffled! Is there a racist conspiracy? Our reporters hard at work with instantiations!

    A lesson in Corona-Propaganda.

    • Agree: Yancey Ward
    • Replies: @Alden
  100. Travis says:
    @peterike

    The vast majority of the recently hospitalized patients in NY were locked in their homes , unemployed or living in nursing homes….The people going to work have not been getting sick. While the antibody testing indicates that 20% of New York City residents have recovered from CV, only 11% of those in the NYPD had the antibodies and only 12& of hospital workers had the antibodies. So those working with the public most at risk of catching the virus are not getting CV , while those not working , staying home are the ones getting hospitalized.

    The lockdowns in NY and NJ failed. it is quite obvious by now. The sole purpose of the lockdowns was to lower the curve to avoid running out of hospital beds. They predicted 140,000 hospitalized New Yorkers , but the peak was 18,000 6 weeks ago. Today less than 8,000 New yorkers are hospitalized for CV. They are laying off healthcare workers , due to lack of need. There is no longer any good reason to continue the lockdowns now that we are into the warmer months.

  101. Alden says:

    Off topic

    One of the most popular Gay Men Bars in San Francisco just closed because of no revenue due to the Covid hoax. It’s located in the skid row area. It has a store on the same block that sells bondage and torture instruments masks hoods anal dilators etc and short legged tables topped with thick reinforced plexiglass

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  102. @Bernard

    These type of comments just astound me. Why be so rude?

    (1) paid by a foreign intelligence service, (2) angry about being an incel, (3) hates Jews because they do not share his perspective (Jews do not share Jew perspectives, etc. and etc.), (4) UPS truck killed his dog, driver looked a little like Steve, (5) caught his wife sleeping with “Steve Sailor” and did not notice that our host is “Steve Sailer,” (6) Joe Biden woke from his stupor to ‘punk’ Steve, (7) the NSA/CIA/FBI operative paid to monitor iSteve could not help but chime in.

    Put your money on (7) even though (5) was the original motivation. 😉

    • LOL: kaganovitch
  103. Alden says:
    @Hail

    San Diego County Ca 3.3 million population revised its covid hoax death to six, 6 out of 3.3 million.

    One thing about California it’s full of immigrants from the east coast Midwest the frozen cold winter parts of America. After a couple years they realize that they don’t get the usual colds sinus flu they got every winter back east.

    Probably the sunshine warm weather and being able to be outside for long periods November to May. But during this year’s flu season the experts tell us to stay inside and not go out even to our yards or balconies to prevent covid hoax.

    Couples who sleep in the same bed every night and ride close to each other in the car are admonished by the Red Guards to stay separated 6 ft when they get out of the car.

    I stopped believing anything in the media years ago. That’s how I know covid is a hoax.

    Syllogism

    Everything in the MSM is a lie.
    MSM says Covid is an epidemic
    Therefore there is no epidemic

    • Replies: @vhrm
  104. Alden says:
    @Hail

    Thank you thank you thank you

  105. These Florentine fellows aren’t keeping a due metri di distanza, but it looks like viral infection will be the least of their problems.

  106. Anonymous[186] • Disclaimer says:

    Meanwhile, Joe…

  107. Travis says:
    @Xens

    Not sure why the focus is on herd immunity. Clearly if 25% of New Yorkers have the antibodies before the winter flu season , it will greatly reduce the risk of hospitals being overwhelmed, This was the big fear. We already know that 33% of the population is immune and will never develop COVID19, since 1/3 of the population is under the of 30 and they have a greater risk of being hospitalized for influenza than COVID19. 3 weeks ago in New York State 15% of the Adult population have antibodies and 30% of the population is under the age of 30. So today in New York 45% of the population are at zero risk of being hospitalized with COVID19.

    Today half the New York population is effectively immune from developing COVID19 and the numbers will increase each day. Hard to imagine NY or NJ will get a significant second wave, since so many of the most vulnerable elderly have already died from CV. So with less potential victims and 50% at no risk there will not be enough potential COVID19 patients

    The elderly should not be putting their hopes in a vaccine. The annual flu vaccines are much less effective for those over the age of 65. It may be the same with a coronavirus vaccine. HCQ is less risky and offers more benefits as a prophylactic than another flu vaccine.
    https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-06-flu-vaccine-ineffective-people-older.html

    ~80 percent of seasonal flu-related deaths occur in people 65 years and older. Yet people age 65 and older are most likely to get vaccinated. annual flu shots. In 2017, 70% of seniors got a flu shot, yet they still 80% of the flu fatalities each year.

  108. res says:
    @Hail

    But for COVID-19 the raw R0 is more like 2.5. So it won’t (probably) go under 1 during the summer

    I believe you are making a key mistake here. You are treating the rate (which is in fact a hypothetical value) like an entity in itself. The transmission rate for any virus of this kind will always be dynamic, always reacting to local conditions, and subject to many other uncertainties (on which, more at the end of this comment from Dr. John Lee of the UK).

    Agreed that R varies. Disagree that I am not realizing that. I wrote “raw R0” for precisely that reason. The idea is to attempt to estimate a “normal” value for a given setting (say Wuhan in wintertime).

    I have written extended comments about how Re varies with an assortment of factors.

    I am fully aware of the difficulty of estimating R anything and probably have forgotten more about modeling and simulation than you ever learned.

    Models are useful for informing behavior, but should seldom be taken as gospel.

    Do you have a specific disagreement with anything else I wrote in my comment, or did you just see it as a good chance to get up on your soapbox and read from your script?

    And here is Dr. Lee on the pro-Panic side’s push to depress R0 to below 1.0:

    The best way to deal with the virus is not lockdown, but to encourage R above one for the fit and healthy.

    Right. That is essentially what I have been saying. Rather loudly. If you had been paying attention.

    I am really tired of people on both sides trying to divide this into a battle of extremes and strawmanning everyone who does not agree with them about everything into the opposite extreme from them.

    That is NOT constructive.

    P.S. Did you fail to notice the text at the bottom of your graphic indicating the ban on large events on 3/9 (right before the R0 curve turned down)? Or are you just content to pretend that had no effect?

  109. Mr. Anon says:
    @Anonymous

    There was also a story out of Wisconsin about a woman with lupus who has taken the deadly poison called Hydroxychloroquine for 19 years and who none-the-less got COVID-19. She said she thought she was immune because Trump said so, or some such.

    Now – pay attention – these anecdotes ARE data.

    The politicization of the this medicine has been quite a thing to see. Trump just uttered some salesman platitudes about how the drug might be useful, might even be a breakthrough, and the Democrats went ape-s**t crazy attacking it. Orange Man Bad. Anything Orange Man touch must be bad too.

    If, in his daily briefing, Trump reminded everyone to brush their teeth regularly, by this time next year, tooth-decay would be rampant among Democrats.

    • Replies: @anon
    , @ben tillman
  110. @Alden

    One of the most popular Gay Men Bars in San Francisco just closed because of no revenue due to the Covid hoax…

    It has a store on the same block that sells bondage and torture instruments masks hoods anal dilators etc…

    You’d think the sudden rush of Chinese customers through the doors to purchase those masks might have clued them in that it was time to raise the price. That might have saved them.

    …and short legged tables topped with thick reinforced plexiglass

    So you’ve been inside, eh?

    • Replies: @Alden
  111. vhrm says:
    @Alden

    Watching the shutdown from NorCal i agree that it is absurd.

    However ima have to police you on this:

    San Diego County Ca 3.3 million population revised its covid hoax death to six, 6 out of 3.3 million.

    That’s not the case. San Diego has had 230 deaths. (of which 107 are in the 80+ category)
    https://www.sandiegocounty.gov/content/sdc/hhsa/programs/phs/community_epidemiology/dc/2019-nCoV/status.html

    That “6” is not a revision, or is one fits observation that only 6 had no comorbidities.

    Yes if someone’s at death’s door and Covid-19 pushes then through that’s an overcount, but at the same time people live with chronic diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease for decades and are still generally “in good health”.
    For many of them Covid-19 did most of the work of looking them.

    The “died with” vs “died of” Sars-cov-2 is a worthwhile discussion, but i don’t think any reasonable line drawn to make that distinction would only attribute 6 deaths to Covid-19. Maybe it ends up being 300 (undercount) or 150 or 100, but not as low as 6.

    (https://www.dailywire.com/news/san-diego-supervisor-says-only-6-of-194-coronavirus-recorded-deaths-pure-coronavirus-deaths)

    • Replies: @Alden
  112. newrouter says:

    “In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is…in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.”
    ― Theodore Dalrymple

  113. Mr. Anon says:

    OT: From The Atlantic; another job Americans won’t do – slave master:

    https://getpocket.com/explore/item/my-family-s-slave?utm_source=pocket-newtab

  114. Alden says:
    @Philo of Alexandria

    Ron’s always been pro China. I lost all respect for Ron and Steve when they joined the MSM in promulgating Covid hoax. Plus months of covid hoax is borrrrring.

    • Replies: @anon
  115. Alden says:
    @vhrm

    I was quoting Supervisor Desmond’s figures in your daily wire link only 6 out of 194 alleged deaths were really covid hoax deaths

    It was a few days ago.

    • Replies: @vhrm
  116. Alden says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    Not inside. It’s a standard store with glass door and glass front. Their stuff is displayed in the windows. It’s near the criminal court house where I worked. Went by it when I turned left to go to work.

    The table had a naked mannequin squatting on it and a naked mannequin lying underneath with his hands clutching a plastic penis. It was in center front where it couldn’t be missed.

  117. @res

    The key issue I have with it is they assume that once COVID-19 is “eliminated” it stays eliminated.

    Although he doesn’t say “eliminated”, he does assume that once the US is “into the much cheaper contact-tracing regime”, the ongoing containment cost can be discounted. The economics are hard to get a handle on but one thing is clear:

    The predictable way the Federal Reserve is making things worse is not included in the model. Nor is the consequent risk adjusted cost of violence.

    Consider how the US lockdowns are dragging on without having reached that point yet.

    Yes, most states are still in “mitigation” and the death trend, although on a linear downslope, intersects at 0 in about 40 weeks at a total death toll of nearly 300,000 deaths.

    The optimistic estimates of herd immunity may well stop it there. However, there are _big_ error bars in the estimates, and a lot of weasels messing with the numbers.

  118. @anonymous

    Thank you, Duck. I dig your new moniker.

    It’s late and my eyes are tired. I read this as:

    Fuck you Dick, and fuck your mother, too.

  119. @vhrm

    I was looking at a Ioannidis paper on death rates by age. European Continentals had an extreme skew by age, but US states and the UK only had a big skew by age: i.e., a higher proportion of deaths were among the non-elderly in the U.S. and the U.K. The US state that was most like the Continent in age skew was, not surprisingly, Massachusetts: white and well-educated.

    My guess is that US and UK middle aged people are in worse shape than Continentals. Is Boris Johnson, age 55, the only head of government in the world to be hospitalized? He’s a force of nature, but he’s also pudgy and hedonistic, which is perhaps why, despite his toffness, he’s a successful politician: UK voters identify with him.

    • Replies: @res
    , @Jack D
    , @LondonBob
  120. BenKenobi says:
    @AnotherDad

    AD, I usually tack an ‘agree’ on to a fair number of your comments. But I find your lumping in of the “just a flu, bro” strawman with various minoritarian tropes to be highly disingenuous.

    • Replies: @Mike Tre
    , @AnotherDad
  121. utu says:
    @PiltdownMan

    Robert Skidelsky is very smart and learned man, so him resorting to the false alternative fallacy can’t be accidental. His false alternative is between A=ineffective lockdown dragging ad infinitum and ruining the economy and B= surreptitiously coming out of the lockdown to reach the herd immunity doing it slowly so people do not get too alarmed about the dying people. The option that he doesn’t mention is C=effective lockdown and countermeasures to eliminate the virus. To be effective it must be strict and more strict it is less time it takes. Testing and tracing and contact isolating must be part of it. Universal (80%) mask wearing must be part of it. This is what New Zealand did; the virus was eliminated in 49 days and they can keep it that way if they continue testing the incoming traffic and quarantining suspect passengers. Just what Great Britain was always doing with respect to all incoming animals and also people from places with known contagions. Why the right or alt-right in particular does not see the virus elimination option as the one that can further its political goals of curtailing globalization and bringing back the control of the borders? Because they never heard of it.

    The debate was falsely framed form the very beginning. The meme of herd immunity was created very early and people liked it because it did not ask them for anything except for the sacrificing of the old folks. Blood sacrifice has a long history in gaining loyalty from participants. The meme of curve flattening came later to counteract it but only apparently. Argument was pretty much the same except it was more humanitarian as by trying to lower the pressure on the health system to be able to treat more people and presumably save more lives. When the concept of the curve flattening was introduced the unmitigated curve and the flattened curve were presented in the slide illustration where it just happened so that the areas under both curves appeared to be equal. Anybody perceptive got the message that the number of people dead will be the same except for those caused by the overwhelmed health system. A third curve with much smaller area was never presented. The third option has never a chance to enter people consciousness. It remained unknown. No media ever mentioned it. China was accused of lying and hiding reoccurring flare ups just in case if somebody thought of bringing up China as an example.

    From the very beginning people were primed and programmed that herd immunity fast way or slow way was the only way. The option of elimination was not offered and kept hidden. It was not put on the table and never taken seriously even as we were learning about Taiwan, Japan and South Korea. Even now when New Zealand eradicated virus in 49 days we still do not talk about it. WHO and CDC were undermining the faith in masks’ effectiveness and they still do. Is it because the universal mask wearing (80% of population) can stop and eradicate the virus. More effective than half -ass lockdowns we have in the US that keep as in idiot’s limbo (*).

    Here comes the conspiracy part. Every conspiray to be successful needs useful idiots. Not all idiots want to be useful but one can always find useful ones among those with the libertarian tilt. They never disappoint to work for TPTB. It works like this: TPTP offers an alternative A or B which really is not a real alternative to hide the option C and then they wait for the useful idiots with a little priming to do their job to undermine B so in effect B becomes more like A until B=A. TPTP wanted A from the very beginning and they will get it in the end largely due to the indefatigable useful idiots.

    At this point I am ready to join the covid truthers that indeed there is a conspiracy but it is opposite of what they thought: TPTB from the day one wanted their useful idiots, flu hoaxers, herd immunity fetishists and all kind of gerontophobs to work towards defeating the curve flattening program with the herd immunity meme but doing it with as much noise as possible so the the real alternative of virus elimination is never heard of.

    The question now is why TPTB did not want to allow for the option of virus elimination. The elimination is a threat to globalism, it may foster resurgence of nationalistic right, it can bring national unity and solidarity, it can reestablish borders and national sovereignty. So they called their libertarian lackeys who never fail to derail any chance of solidarity that could challenge the system. TPTB at least intuitively knew that encouraging and bringing their subjects to cannibalism is an opportunity that can’t be missed. The leftist revolution devour its children but the neoliberal revolution eats its grandparents at least at this stage.

    Who was priming this false opposition? Who was creating the talking point for the troglodytes? Few German scientists like Knut Wittkowski, John Ioannidis, Russia Today until they had to change their tune when Russia got virus under its ass, publications coming from various think tanks, countless lolbertarian bloggers. Who fell for it apart form the troglodytes? Apparently quite a few smart people who are smart enough to know but not good enough to know what is right and what is wrong.

    The disinformation campaign Operation CORONAVIRUS was carried out as perfectly as the KGB’s Operation INFEKTION.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_INFEKTION

    (*) A. Karlin: “So we got a kind of idiot’s limbo where r0 fell to 0.6-1.0 (instead of the 0.3 observed in “cybergulag” Wuhan), failing to stamp out the epidemic, but the economy collapsed anyway.”
    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/corona-probably-out-of-control-in-dagestan/#comment-3906817

    • Replies: @Travis
    , @peterike
  122. epebble says:
    @Anonymous

    Even if HCQ is great for Covid for some people, it may be entirely useless for some and even dangerous for a few. This is how many powerful drugs behave and that is why it is a prescription drug and not over the counter like some innocent aspirin or acetaminophen.

    Besides, if HCQ were really effective for most people, we wouldn’t be losing 1500 people per day two months after the beginning of pandemic here in the U.S. There are probably a few hundred hospitals in U.S. treating Covid patients and it is absurd to think that most of them would rather have a patient die by withholding a lifesaving drug (costing a few $) for some weird political reason.

    • Troll: Manfred Arcane
  123. res says:
    @Steve Sailer

    Thanks. That is an interesting hypothesis of yours. Sounds plausible to me.

    I am guessing this is the paper you mean?
    Population-level COVID-19 mortality risk for non-elderly individuals overall and for non-elderly individuals without underlying diseases in pandemic epicenters
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.04.05.20054361v2

    This excerpt from the abstract seems like a decent summary. I like his analogy to driving risk (but note the complaints in the comments about that, perhaps an oversimplification).

    RESULTS: Individuals with age <65 account for 4.8-9.3% of all COVID-19 deaths in 10 European countries and Canada, 13.0% in the UK, and 7.8-23.9% in the US locations. People <65 years old had 36- to 84-fold lower risk of COVID-19 death than those ≥65 years old in 10 European countries and Canada and 14- to 56-fold lower risk in UK and US locations. The absolute risk of COVID-19 death as of May 1, 2020 for people <65 years old ranged from 6 (Canada) to 249 per million (New York City). The absolute risk of COVID-19 death for people ≥80 years old ranged from 0.3 (Florida) to 10.6 per thousand (New York). The COVID-19 death risk in people <65 years old during the period of fatalities from the epidemic was equivalent to the death risk from driving between 13 and 101 miles per day for 11 countries and 6 states, and was higher (equivalent to the death risk from driving 143-668 miles per day) for 6 other states and the UK. People <65 years old without underlying predisposing conditions accounted for only 0.7-2.6% of all COVID-19 deaths (data available from France, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, Georgia, and New York City).

  124. vhrm says:
    @Alden

    Right. I’m saying Supervisor Desmond is twisting the numbers and the headlines about what he said are twisting then even more. So don’t believe their fake news.

    230 dead out of 3.3m population is already a ridiculously low 0.007% (7 per 100,000)
    Arguing that it’s really 6 out of 3.3m is just a distraction at this point when it comes to letting us out.

  125. anon[329] • Disclaimer says:
    @Mr. Anon

    If, in his daily briefing, Trump reminded everyone to brush their teeth regularly, by this time next year, tooth-decay would be rampant among Democrats.

    Can someone please, please, please get Trump to say in one of his briefings:

    “Don’t chug liquid Drano! It’s bad for you! Sad!”

    Please? Just to see what happens.

  126. anon[329] • Disclaimer says:
    @Alden

    I lost all respect for Ron and Steve when they joined the MSM in promulgating Covid hoax. Plus months of covid hoax is borrrrring.

    Then why are you still cluttering up comments?

  127. Hail says: • Website
    @Polynikes

    The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. Maybe an IFR in the .2 to .4 range–this would be a bad flu season to once in a generation flu season range.

    A meta-analysis of 12 randomized population antibody studies points to <0.1% except for a few outlier places:

    https://www.unz.com/chopkins/brave-new-normal-part-2/#comment-3908373

    A single case was at 0.4%, Geneva, reporting as of a certain point in April; given that this is an outlier, I expect that a follow-up done now would report it down. Wuhan reported 0.3%. Gangelt, Germany, 0.25% (small study; early outbreak).

    The other nine studies in the meta-analysis average <0.1% deaths to those who are [that is, were] corona-positive (0.085%; range: 0.02% to 0.17%). […]

    The virus is not going to cause any noticeable full-year mortality rise almost anywhere. The Panic-induced deaths might, in some places.

  128. @Yancey Ward

    “I died from Orange Man’s hydroxoclorocyanide”

    “You died?”

    “I got better”

  129. Mr Mox says:
    @Anonymous

    TODAYS STEVE SAILER POSTING ABOUT STUDIES UPDATE:

    STILL ZERO HEALTHY ADULTS OR CHILDREN THREATENED, STEVE STILL INSISTING ON RUINING THEIR LIVES FOR NO REASON

    You totally convinced me. We should lift the Caps Lock lockdown immediately.

  130. Isn’t there a question as to whether there is even the possibility of herd immunity at least as regards THIS bug? i mean isn’t it true that people can get sick again and/or somehow lose antibody’s? I think there are virologists who make this case though I haven’t read them yet.
    Has Steve ever addressed this question or does he just not think it plausible?

  131. RW says:

    Steve, it’s not entirely clear that antibodies give protective immunity to the COVID-19. From an April 22nd Johns Hopkins research article:

    “For SARS in 2003, antibodies were maintained in recovered patients for up to 2 years, but as the virus disappeared by mid-2004, protection from reinfection was never demonstrated.”
    https://www.centerforhealthsecurity.org/our-work/publications/developing-a-national-strategy-for-serology-antibody-testing-in-the-US

    Even if antibodies do confer immunity. If we will have to fight COVID-19 for years, then a herd immunity strategy will not be so easy to implement if the immunity wears off quickly while lots of people practice social distancing for long periods of time.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    , @Achilles Wannabe
  132. Mike Tre says:
    @BenKenobi

    Agreed. As well as his arbitrary invocation of the immigration problem as reason to be unconcerned with the unprecedented lock downs taking place.

  133. @gary

    Do you think the Black Death was also a scam?

  134. Travis says:
    @utu

    Herd immunity was never the goal here in the US. The only Nation which had Herd immunity as a goal was the UK, and they quickly rejected the goal of Herd immunity. When did Herd immunity become a meme ? It seems the only one obsessed with herd immunity is Steve Sailer. Certainly it was never discussed by the COVID task force. It is rarely mentioned on any of the News programs on TV. The average American has never heard the term and has no idea what it would signify.

    One reason Herd immunity was never seriously discussed , we did not know if the antibodies would protect people from re-infection , nor did we know how long the antibodies would last…we still do not know these answers. The goal of the lockdowns was to flatten the curve to avoid overwhelming the hospitals. We flattened the curve. Hospitals never ran out of beds or ventilators. Today there is no risk of such a scenario, the hospitalization rates never approached 10%, initially they projected 14% of those infected would be hospitalized, the actual hospitalization rate was less than 3%. So we now know the hospitals will not be overrun with COVID19 patients, since most do not get sick enough to require hospital care. It is time to end the lockdowns. Prolonging them results in more deaths. The best plan to protect the elderly is to allow more young people to gain immunity now.

    • Replies: @utu
  135. @Anon

    70% of those over the age of 65 get the annual Flu Shot, yet 50,000 elderly die of the flu each year. Any Coronavirus vaccine will not help the elderly much. Old people with underlying conditions have weak immune systems and will continue to die from Coronavirus , flu and other colds that healthy people can easily overcome. Studies indicate the flu vaccine offers no benefit for elderly.

    The hype over vaccines is strange , because this pandemic will be finished by the time any vaccine is available and the most vulnerable will get little benefit from any Coronavirus vaccine.

    • Replies: @res
  136. Jack D says:
    @Steve Sailer

    The US has a lot more non-whites than Europe. Without going deeply into the data, my gut feeling based upon press reports is that the people in the US who have died from Xi Jinping Virus fall mainly into two categories:

    1. Elderly white people. In the past the US was a much whiter country so most elderly people are white.

    2. Not-so elderly (roughly age 45 and up) non-white people. Victims under 70 seem to be concentrated among non-whites.

    If you are not in one of these two categories (e.g. you are a white person under 70) then your chances are pretty good. If you are under 45 and white, your chances are EXTREMELY good unless you already have some very bad pre-existing condition such as terminal cancer. There have been a few cases of white people under 45 and without any co-morbidities dying from Covid, but they are fairly rare exceptions. People also die from lightning strikes and snake bites and so on and for a white person under 45 covid is probably on that order of risk – rare but not totally impossible. So why have we locked up everyone?

    • Agree: Johann Ricke
  137. Jack D says:
    @RW

    Never demonstrated does not mean does not exist. Most experts in this field expect that having antibodies in your blood will mean that you have at least partial immunity to Covid such that you will either not be capable of being reinfected or else if you are, you will experience it the next time as a much milder disease that won’t kill you. The chances that you will be able to get Covid over and over and each time as seriously as the first time are close to nil – that’s just not how our immune system works. Anyone who says this is just a Chicken Little, the same people who were saying that this would kill millions of Americans. These folks have been proved wrong at every turn.

    • Replies: @Achilles Wannabe
  138. @BenKenobi

    AD, I usually tack an ‘agree’ on to a fair number of your comments. But I find your lumping in of the “just a flu, bro” strawman with various minoritarian tropes to be highly disingenuous.

    I’m not making any such comparison with minoritarianism in terms of moral worth. Minoritarianism is evil. “Just the flu” is not.

    Nor in terms of importance. Minoritarianism is a nation/civilization wrecking disaster. Defeating it is existential. How we deal with Xi Jinping’s Gift is basically of no importance whatsoever.

    Nor in terms of policy. Minoritarianism is a toxic brew for any people unfortunate enough to drink it–or have it poured down their throats. Treating this “just like the flu” and powering through is a perfectly reasonable approach.

    Nor in terms of obviousness of the error. Minoritarianism is openly logically–insane. Openly contradictory and stupid–“diversity is our greatest strenght”. “Just the flu” is not. It’s a question of gathering data and seeing what it says.

    No what i’m rhetorically abusing is Hail’s numbers. Specifically:

    Sweden will not lose much more than 0.02% of total population to the virus, as I have argued (“Stay-Open Sweden set to lose 0.02% of total population to Coronavirus, in line with usual peak flu years“). Just The Flu vindicated yet again.

    As i pointed out Sweden *already* has 3700 Xi Jinping deaths (3800 now) which is 0.037%–twice Hail’s end number! (And the incentives in Sweden are opposite the US. It’s socialized medicine there’s no monetary incentive. And the government is politically committed to their program, they would like a low number.)

    Take NY State:
    — 20,000 Xi Jinping deaths, in a state with 20 million people.
    — So the population fatality rate of Xi is already 0.1%
    which is well about the infection fatality rate of “just the flu”
    — Even if you dismiss half of those deaths as fraud, you’re still at 0.05% pop fatality already … with only maybe 15% of the population infected. So even allowing for huge coronafraud you get an IFR of 0.35%–above any flu of our lifetime.

    We have a bunch of sanity checks like this where Xi Jinping has run wild. And everywhere that’s happened the population fatality rate is already > .1% — greater than the IFR for “the flu”–and comparing against antibody results the Xi Jinping IFR always comes out to something ranging around 0.5%. At least 10x “the flu”.

    That’s my point.

    Not talking morality, nor importance, nor policy choice just numbers.

    In numbers “just the flu” is just wrong.

  139. res says:
    @Hernan Pizzaro del Blanco

    70% of those over the age of 65 get the annual Flu Shot, yet 50,000 elderly die of the flu each year.

    Those numbers seem in the ballpark (both maybe a little high?). Do you have sources so I can see more context?

    For example, is there any estimate how often those deaths occurred because they guessed wrong on the flu variants to include in the vaccine? Presumably that would not be a problem with a COVID-19 specific vaccine.

    I am skeptical a vaccine will arrive in time to make a major difference with respect to ending the lockdowns, but think it is important to evaluate different arguments and facts carefully.

    FWIW here is what the CDC has to say about
    People 65 Years and Older & Influenza
    https://www.cdc.gov/flu/highrisk/65over.htm

    • Replies: @Travis
  140. utu says:
    @Travis

    “Herd immunity was never the goal” and yet it becomes the goal “It is time to end the lockdowns. Prolonging them results in more deaths. The best plan to protect the elderly is to allow more young people to gain immunity now.”. Exactly as I described. Present a false alternative A or B and then merge B with A through rhetorical activism exemplified by the quote from your comment while never a word about the option C that we could eliminate the virus.

    • Agree: BB753
  141. @Hail

    Dr. Wodarg has published that Blacks and others with malaria-region ancestry will die at a certain rate from hydroxychloroquine, but non-malaria people will do fine with it.

    He says this may be one key reason for the racial disparity in deaths seen in Western countries.

    Yes, and the stupid “VA study” that the Left used to discredit HCQ involved mostly black patients.

  142. @Anonymous

    A Harford County woman who was given the controversial drug hydroxychloroquine along with a Z-Pak antibiotic treatment to combat the coronavirus said the drug cocktail didn’t work.

    “I thought that maybe it had worked, but apparently it didn’t work,” said Kenya Arnold of Abingdon . . . .

    Well, there you have it. It’s entirely possible that HCQ affects blacks differently.

  143. @Mr. Anon

    The Today Show on Tuesday claimed, in an offhand remark, that clinical trials had proven HCQ ineffective.

  144. Deckin says:

    Time for the smart set to turn their attention on this:

    https://milano.repubblica.it/cronaca/2020/05/20/news/anticorpi_in_un_milanese_su_20_gia_prima_dell_epidemia_covid-257180157/

    Quick translation:
    5% + for CoVid antibodies prior to the first known case of CoVid (from saved blood donations) in Feb 2020

    So, it’s 5% for Spain now, but it was 5% for Milano prior to the first recorded case in Lombardia?

    • Replies: @vhrm
  145. Travis says:
    @res

    https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-06-flu-vaccine-ineffective-people-older.html

    The flu vaccine did a poor job protecting older Americans against the illness last winter, even though the vaccine was well-matched to the flu bugs going around. The vaccine was about 42 percent effective in preventing illness severe enough to send a patient to the doctor’s office. But it was essentially ineffective protecting some age groups. That includes people 65 and older—the group that’s hardest hit by flu, suffering the most deaths and hospitalizations.

    So the the vaccine did not work at all for the elderly, yet it worked ok for the younger people.

    • Replies: @res
  146. peterike says:
    @utu

    The option that he doesn’t mention is C=effective lockdown and countermeasures to eliminate the virus. To be effective it must be strict and more strict it is less time it takes. Testing and tracing and contact isolating must be part of it. Universal (80%) mask wearing must be part of it. This is what New Zealand did; the virus was eliminated in 49 days and they can keep it that way if they continue testing the incoming traffic and quarantining suspect passengers.

    Good lord. You really think this could ever be possible in the United States?

    Strict lockdown: let’s see how the blacks and Hispanics put up with it. To say nothing of the “muh Constitution!” crowd (and they’re right).

    Testing and tracing: with 330 million people, including anywhere from 20 to 40 million illegals. Ok, sure.

    Universal mask wearing: see blacks and Hispanics.

    New Zealand did it! As I’ve said before, New Zealand is smaller than Brooklyn and Queens, and it’s got a lot higher percentage of white people.

    Testing incoming traffic. I’m not going to bother checking, but what’s the average number of people arriving from foreign countries, U.S. vs. New Zealand? Is U.S. maybe 50x more? 100x? How many were arriving when the virus was around but nobody was really paying attention? What’s the internal movement of New Zealanders compared to New Yorkers, who were happily spreading it everywhere?

    Nothing that happens in New Zealand has the slightest bearing on the United States. I wish it did, but that United States has been gone for fifty years.

  147. vhrm says:
    @Deckin

    5% by 1st half of February seems huge. With exponential growth and all there’s no way total infections stopped at 7% unless growth was already slowing even then.

    The text of the paper teases a Supplemental Table S2 that shows seroprevelence in the months before February, but i can’t find it in the pdf.

    The preprint link
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.05.11.20098442v1

    One thing of note (that Ionnidas mentions in his seroprevelence meta-analysis) is that the numbers from blood donation are probably undercounts since they are only from people who were accepted for blood donation. People with symptoms or contact with infected people were excluded.

    In this particular paper:

    The main study cohort was composed of blood donors, who were apparently healthy subjects, aged 18-70 years. Exclusion criteria were any active infection or other active medical conditions, recent surgical procedures, trips in areas with endemic infective diseases, reported risk factors for parenterally acquired infections, chronic degenerative conditions except stable arterial hypertension, type 2 diabetes or
    dyslipidemia under control with lifestyle or pharmacological therapy, diagnosis of cancer or high risk of cardiovascular events. All donors underwent clinical and medical history evaluation and biochemical testing.
    To qualify for blood donation, candidates should had been free of recent symptoms possibly related to COVID-19, nor had close contact with confirmed cases. Since March 26th, they should had been symptoms free during the preceding 14 days, nor had unprotected contacts with suspected cases11.

    So the 7.1% at the end especially is probably an undercount, but no idea by how much.

  148. res says:
    @Travis

    Thanks. Here is a CDC page discussing that flu season.
    https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season-2016-2017.htm

    The H3N2 variant which seemed to cause the trouble is a descendant of the 1968 Hong Kong flu.

    One interesting thing about that CDC page is they mention different forms of the vaccine for older people. I wonder if that made a difference.

  149. @Jack D

    The chances that you will be able to get Covid over and over and each time as seriously as the first time are close to nil – that’s just not how our immune system works. Anyone who says this is just a Chicken Little, the same people who were saying that this would kill millions of Americans.

    Who is saying that? That is not what RW was saying. Your statement is a straw man. Some people are simply saying you can get the Bug again. Antibodies don’t necessarily work. Yet on this site we don ‘t see any sort of discussion of this factor which I do think is empirical. Why is that? Is someone vested in the concept of herd immunity?

  150. @RW

    Yeah, there seems to be an assumption abut the very concept of herd immunity a that is jsut accepted on this site as if no empirical questions have been raised about it or are worth
    raising Wonder why that is

  151. LondonBob says:

    Most people don’t have antibodies, even then London had 17% with antibodies according to the serology tests the government said they have done. London is now free of coronavirus.

  152. LondonBob says:
    @Steve Sailer

    The Russian PM Mikhail Vladimirovich Mishusti was hospitalised, now released. Similar age and build to Johnson. Dmitry Peskov, the Presidential spokesman, is still hospitalised.

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The unspoken statistical reality of urban crime over the last quarter century.
Talk TV sensationalists and axe-grinding ideologues have fallen for a myth of immigrant lawlessness.
Which superpower is more threatened by its “extractive elites”?
How a Young Syndicate Lawyer from Chicago Earned a Fortune Looting the Property of the Japanese-Americans, then Lived...
Becker update V1.3.2