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Lifting the Lockdown; Easy Does It
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Can we admit that we were wrong? Can we admit that the coronavirus is not going to kill “hundreds of thousands or even millions” of Americans? Can we admit that the public health system is not going to buckle and collapse? Can we admit that we fashioned our public policy on flawed computer models that proved utterly worthless? Can we admit that the number of people infected is significantly larger than the official numbers? Can we admit that the percentage of fatalities is going to be significantly lower? Can we admit that the majority of people who have died are over 60 with serious underlying conditions like high-blood pressure, diabetes, obesity etc? Can we admit that there is no “historical scientific basis” for using “lockdowns” to fight a pandemic? Can we admit that “social distancing”, “shelter in place”, “self isolation” and “self quarantine” are arbitrary directives aimed at social control and not science-based remedies derived from serious research? Can we admit that the new data and the hard science do not support the existing policy but suggest that savaging civil liberties, decimating the economy and keeping the entire population in a perennial state of hysteria, is a gross overreaction that has done incalculable damage to the country, to our economic well-being, and to our tattered credibility as a responsible nation?

The bottom line is this: The data and the science do not support the current policy. That alone should give us pause.

The lockdown was conjured up by made-for-TV infectious disease experts who based their recommendations on the results of discredited computer models that don’t square with reality. In short, their calculations were wrong, thus, the policy they cobbled together, is also wrong. This is not a liberal vs conservative issue. This is not a Democrat vs Republican issue. The issue is whether policy should be shaped by data and science or by fake computer models and the relentless fearmongering of the media. That is the heart of the matter. Check out this clip from an article by Dr. Scott W. Atlas:

“Tens of thousands of Americans have died, and Americans are now desperate for sensible policymakers who have the courage to ignore the panic and rely on facts. Leaders must examine accumulated data to see what has actually happened, rather than keep emphasizing hypothetical projections; combine that empirical evidence with fundamental principles of biology established for decades; and then thoughtfully restore the country to function….

Vital population immunity is prevented by total isolation policies, prolonging the problem….We know from decades of medical science that infection itself allows people to generate an immune response — antibodies — so that the infection is controlled throughout the population by “herd immunity.” Indeed, that is the main purpose of widespread immunization in other viral diseases — to assist with population immunity. In this virus, we know that medical care is not even necessary for the vast majority of people who are infected. It is so mild that half of infected people are asymptomatic,… By transmitting the virus to others in the low-risk group who then generate antibodies, they block the network of pathways toward the most vulnerable people, ultimately ending the threat. Extending whole-population isolation would directly prevent that widespread immunity from developing.”(“The data is in — stop the panic and end the total isolation”, The Hill)

Think about that. He’s not just saying that the lockdown is preventing low-risk people from developing the antibodies they need to fend-off the infection, he’s also saying that the policy is actually putting vulnerable people more at risk. Isn’t that worth mulling over?

The virus isn’t something we choose or don’t choose, and it’s certainly not something that can be avoided by bolting the door and hiding under the bed. There are only two paths to immunity: Vaccine or the natural immune response of antibodies. That’s it! There is no third path. Self quarantine is not a solution, at best it’s a temporary fix. Eventually, everyone will have to emerge from their respective spider-holes and reenter the real world. What other choice is there?

Have you wondered how the government will respond to a second or third wave of the virus if there’s another outbreak next fall or spring? Do you think they’ll shut down the economy, send millions of workers home, and burn through another $8 trillion or so a second time around?

Hell no. That was a “one shot deal” and they blew it. They could have settled on a less expensive, less radical policy that kept parts of the economy open while younger, low-risk workers continued at their jobs gradually building up their immunity they’d for future outbreaks. Instead, they bet the farm on their goofy shelter-in-place theory and came up snake-eyes. That means the next time the virus hits, most people will have to suck it up and go to work or stay at home until the money runs out.

It makes you wonder why the media has been so critical of Sweden’s approach, when they clearly settled on a strategy that not only saves lives without shutting everything down, but their plan also doesn’t break the bank. The fact is, they got it right and we got it wrong. At the same time, according to CNBC, “Sweden’s chief epidemiologist said….that “herd immunity” could be reached in the capital Stockholm in a matter of weeks,” which means the majority of the people will have developed at least some immunity to the virus by mid-May. In contrast, the Trump administration’s projections were way off, the economy has been put on ice, and self isolation has prevented healthy people from developing the antibodies they need to achieve some partial immunity to the infection. If we were keeping score, the US would be deep in the red, but this isn’t a competition. It’s a struggle to find a smart and sustainable policy that saves lives while avoiding a second Great Depression.

The economy isn’t a lite switch that can be turned on and off. It is a complex ecosystem that creates a myriad of tiny niches where people can eke out a living by providing services and products that the public wants. The lockdown has dealt a deathblow to that fragile system. Along with the millions of people who are now headed for the unemployment lines, the lockdown has taken a sledgehammer to the thousands of small and mid-sized businesses that are the very heart and soul of the country. Many of these businesses will be unable to muddle through the protracted freeze, and will be forced to draw the blinds and call it quits. That’s going to be devastating for the country and for the thousands of small towns that owe their survival to the revenues produced by these small businesses. It’s going to change everything; where people work, where people shop, and where people call home.

Aside from the pain that will be inflicted on businesses and workers, you can bet that elites will use the crisis to impose another version of the “Shock Doctrine” just like they did following the 2008 meltdown. That means more consolidation, more privatization, more austerity, more cuts to social programs, fewer public services, much higher unemployment and an explosion of homelessness, hunger, alcoholism, drug abuse, crime and social unrest. You know the drill.

They’ll point to the widening deficits and demand more belt-tightening for the proles and more zero rates and multi-trillion dollar liquidity injections for Wall Street. They’ll use the debt as an excuse to restructure the labor force just like Obama’s chief economic advisor Lawrence Summers did following the last crisis. Summers slashed the fiscal stimulus in half in order to produce a sluggish, under-performing, permanently-stagnant economy (1 to 2% GDP) that kept a thumb on wages (to prevent inflation) so that interest rates could be kept at zero indefinitely while trillions of dollars were pumped into the financial markets. That’s how the system was set up. The Fed launched three iterations of QE to keep Wall Street’s coffers brimming while working people experienced the weakest recovery in the post-war era. Meanwhile homeless camps popped up in cities across the country and long-term unemployment forced 35% of the workforce into low paying, no benefits, service sector jobs in the so-called “gig” economy. This is how Summers deftly restructured the labor force without anyone even noticing.

Check out this clip from an article written in 2016 by the world Socialist Web Site:

“The proportion of contingent workers holding multiple jobs has more than quadrupled over the past 10 years, from 7.3 percent in 2005 to 32 percent in 2015. Nearly one-third of people working with no benefits or job security are holding down an additional part-time or full-time job just to make ends meet.” (“The social crisis and the US elections”, World Socialist Web Site)

This is what “restructuring the labor force” looks like in real time. It’s no accident, in fact, these stealth attacks on labor were first pioneered in Japan where an estimated 40% of the workforce is currently employed in part-time, multiple-job, sweatshop-like drudgery while the Bank of Japan continues to load up on government bonds and other financial assets to boost stock prices for the investor class. Can you see the pattern here? Here’s more from an article at investing.com:

“A new study by economists from Harvard and Princeton indicates that 94% of the 10 million new jobs created during the Obama era were temporary positions. The study shows that the jobs were temporary, contract positions, or part-time “gig” jobs in a variety of fields….The disappearance of conventional full-time work, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. work, has hit every demographic. “Workers seeking full-time, steady work have lost,” said Krueger.” (“Nearly 95% of all new jobs during Obama era were part-time, or contract”, investing.com)

Virtually all the jobs created under Obama were shi**y, low-paying, service sector jobs with no health care, no sick leave and no retirement. At the same time, more than 500,000 good paying government jobs were slashed in order to trim budgets and enforce the belt-tightening regime that is crucial part of this upward wealth transfer swindle. Check out this graph from the Streetlight Blog which sums up Obama’s dismal record in one chart:

The point is this: The restructuring of the labor market was all by design. The plan was implemented during the recovery phase following the last crisis just as a new version will be implemented following this crisis. It’s all part of the elitist gameplan for crushing labor. Meanwhile, corporate profits will continue to soar, stocks will climb even higher, and the wealth gap will widen into a gaping chasm the size of the Grand Canyon.

This is why we need to restart the economy ASAP, because elites are going to use the crisis to push their own screw-the-worker agenda. Beyond that, however, remains the simple fact that the policy does not fit the science. For example, this is from the Miami Herald:

“About 6 percent of Miami-Dade’s population — about 165,000 residents — have antibodies indicating a past infection by the novel coronavirus, dwarfing the state health department’s tally of about 10,600 cases, according to preliminary study results announced by University of Miami researchers Friday” (“Miami-Dade has tens of thousands of missed coronavirus infections, UM survey finds”, Miami Herald)

So there have been 287 deaths in Miami-Dade county while over 165,000 residents have already had the virus. That’s a Fatality Rate of 0.17% which means that roughly 2 in every 1,000 people will die. 2 deaths per thousand does not warrant shutting down the entire economy.

Here’s more from the research team at Accelerated Urgent Care in Bakersfield, California.Take a look:

“In Kern County, we’ve tested, 5,213 people and we have 340 positive COVID cases. Well that’s 6.5 percent of the population. Which would indicate a widespread viral infection similar to the flu,” Dr. Erickson said. “…that (suggests that) 12 percent of Californian’s were positive for COVID.”

Erickson said that the original projections of millions of deaths from COVID were “woefully inaccurate” and were not materializing. By Ericson’s calculations, California–which has a population of roughly 40 million, probably has 4.7 million positive cases presently. With the current number of deaths currently at 1,227, that puts the Fatality Rate at 0.03.

“Does that (low death rate) necessitate sheltering in place? Does that necessitate shutting down medical systems? Does that necessitate being out of work?” Erickson asked. Nationwide, about 42,000 people have died of coronavirus as of Wednesday. Between 30,000 and 60,000 die of flu annually, Erickson said, citing CDC data.” (“Video: Dr. Erickson COVID-19: Does This Make Sense? Are We Following Science?”, Global Research)

In New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo reported similar results from random testing conducted recently in New York state. Here’s an excerpt from an article at RT:

“Early antibody testing for the coronavirus in 19 New York counties suggests up to 2.7 million people could have been infected in the state alone, meaning the real death rate may be much lower, Governor Andrew Cuomo has revealed. Results from a random testing sample of 3,000 New Yorkers have revealed that some 13.9 percent of state residents have likely had and recovered from the coronavirus…

The new numbers indicate that this revised infection rate, compared to 15,740 deaths linked to coronavirus statewide, points to a fatality rate of only about 0.5 – much lower than previously believed…” (“MILLIONS infected? Cuomo says NY antibody tests suggest Covid-19 less fatal than previously thought”, RT)

So, even in New York, the epicenter of the pandemic, the actual fatality rate is significantly lower than suggested by the “confirmed COVID cases” which feature prominently on TVs across America. (New York’s fatality rate of 0.5 is slightly higher than the rate of 0.37% reported recently from a study in Germany, and similar to the findings from other tests conducted in others in Santa Clara, Los Angeles and Sweden. All of these studies indicate that the fatality rate from COVID is much lower than the official case fatality rate of about 13% in the UK, Italy and France, which is a gross overestimate used to hoodwink the sheeple.)

So we know that the official numbers are misleading and that the percentage of people who will die is going to be much smaller than originally projected, but is that enough to change the policy and end the lockdown?

Yes, it is. The policy should be tailored to fit the data. If the fatality rate is roughly one-half of 1 percent, then we need to reconsider our approach and make the necessary adjustments..

Easy Does It– The Lockdown must be lifted gradually

According to Senior Swedish epidemiologist and former Chief Scientist of the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, Johan Giesecke, the lockdown cannot be terminated all at once or there will be a dramatic spike in cases a few weeks later.

“You have to step down the ladder one rung at a time”… (Giesecke thinks that reopening the schools should come first.)

So, slowly ease up on the lockdown and gradually allow people to get back to work. That sounds like sound advice to me.

NOTES–

1– Why lockdowns are the wrong policy – Swedish expert Prof. Johan Giesecke, Lockdown TV

2– Bakersfield doctors dispute need for stay-at-home order, Bakersfield Now Hour-long interview, Doctors Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi of Accelerated Urgent Care

https://bakersfieldnow.com/news/coronavirus/accelerated-urgent-care-provides-statistical-update-on-covid-19

 
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