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I just had a phone chat with a friend who's firmly in Tolya's camp. He made some valid points and missed some, too. One of his arguments was that, almost everywhere that random antibody testing is being done the infection rate is north of 15%, suggesting that herd immunity is within reach. I've no doubt that there are more infected than the current counts indicate, but it's also the case that the current antibody tests are producing significant false positive and false negatives. I can't think of a single COVID-19 statistic I really trust right now.

The other point my friend made was that, after accounting for co-morbidities, the actual COVID-19 mortality rate is comparable to the flu. When I asked him if he was comparing to flu, minus co-morbidities, he paused and said... "hmm".

My gut feeling at the moment is that enough people will act responsibly when restrictions are lifted to get R0 below one and keep it there. I don't have a lot of confidence in that feeling, but I think it more likely that we're on the path to recovery (long and slow as it might be) than to doom. We've all seen the news reports of people crammed together to protest safe distancing restrictions, but I think that's not representative of the larger population. Those reports remind me of the "idiot on the street" segments that are so popular on late night television. You find what you look for.

The difference between the urban and rural rates Scylla mentioned underpin the debate between states and the federal government and between cities and states regarding lifting of restrictions. Unfortunately nobody's really in a good position to call the shots. The interconnectedness of modern society entangles everyone in everyone else's business. One of the advantages of the US being a confederation of states is that we get to run lots of experiments, both intention and accidental. That's also a disadvantage. The big question for me, once again, is whether we'll learn anything from all this.

The second question is just what the long term economic costs will be. The markets don't seem terribly worried at the moment.

 

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*****ing *****ed up mother *****ers are *****ing the whole *****ing *****ed up ****sucking *****head *****s. And then some.

Cutting in with a rando side comment because I haven’t kept up - I’m tired of all the conspiracy theories behind it, and all the Americans on my feeds (note: I am also an American) pointing fingers at

You are out over your skis here Saucey. Babies with jaundice receive UV/Blue phototherapy because exposing blood to UV aids oxidation of the toxic bilirubin in it. A significant volume of blood reache

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36 minutes ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

 transportation hubs that see an enormous amount of international traffic. ...

Then there is the chronological issue: both Italy and New York instituted shut downs after the virus was already firmly established

 

agree with your point that there is a significant covid correlation to the volume of travel into locations

the top 10 most traveled to countries in millions per annum:

France: 89.4
Spain: 82.8
USA: 79.6
China: 62.9
Italy: 62.1
Turkey: 45.8
Mexico: 41.4
Germany: 38.9
Thailand: 38.3
UK: 36.3

is not surprising to see countries like Spain, Italy, USA and UK where the lock down response came late and slow, featuring high in covid tallies

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4 minutes ago, Mollymews said:

agree with your point that there is a significant covid correlation to the volume of travel into locations

the top 10 most traveled to countries in millions per annum:

France: 89.4
Spain: 82.8
USA: 79.6
China: 62.9
Italy: 62.1
Turkey: 45.8
Mexico: 41.4
Germany: 38.9
Thailand: 38.3
UK: 36.3

is not surprising to see countries like Spain, Italy, USA and UK where the lock down response came late and slow, featuring high in covid tallies

Wow. That's a suggestive stat. Thanks for that, Molly.

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6 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

The second question is just what the long term economic costs will be. The markets don't seem terribly worried at the moment.

 

if we mean capital markets then yes. Capital investors just go to where the money is. Amazon, Netflix, etc are doing great. Airlines and tourism doing horribly

the supply (manufacturing, processing, etc) markets are a shambles tho.  USA is starting to see meat shortages for example. Should food shortages become more prevalent the pressure is going to increase significantly

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Posted (edited)

China and South Korea’s containment methods seem to have worked pretty well compared to, well, everyone else. But it’s too late for anyone else to follow their lead. That’s closing the barn door after all the cows are gone and the barn is on fire. Herd immunity? Even if the 15% number is accurate, that’s a lot closer to the percentage of the population that’s going to die from COVID-19 than what it takes for herd immunity. We need more like 90% for that.

My peeve is talk of some “second wave”, as if we’ve seen the end of the first wave. This crap about opening the country back up is like if during World War 2 we had just declared victory after the Coral Sea and brought everyone home.

Edited by Lyssa Greymoon
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On 5/4/2020 at 6:09 PM, Seicher Rae said:

And if we DO get a vaccine soonish? And the anti-vaxxers? Holy effing cow. Your body, your rights? (And how many of those nutjobs then turn out to be anti-choice?) OK, your body/choice but live (or die) with the consequences. Pass a law that anyone not vaccinated cannot come into contact with responsible people. Your body/choice ends at the tip of my nose. They can do what the eff they please, but not if it infects me or anyone else. What is so hard about that concept. Your choices come with consequences.

 

I have very little to add. The above just needed restating.

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40 minutes ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

Tolya, this is the kind of argument that nearly exemplifies how one can render mere statistics not merely meaningless, but actually misleading.

Let me throw another couple of stats at you that may highlight the problem with your argument.

New York City: Population Density: 10,715/km2

South Dakota: Population Density: 4.42/km2

Why is it, do you think, that the virus has hit urban areas particularly hard? Do you see any, oh, I don't know, demographic similarities between the particularly hard hit areas that might explain why they have been particularly hard hit? Not to mention the fact that NYC, New Jersey, etc. are transportation hubs that see an enormous amount of international traffic.

Then there is the chronological issue: both Italy and New York instituted shut downs after the virus was already firmly established. God knows what the death toll in these places might have been if they had not responded as they did, late as it was. One of the problems, of course, is that we can't know how many would have died, and the impacts upon their economies, had they not shut down.

Oh, and cultural differences. Sweden (which actually has a very high mortality rate compared to its Scandinavian neighbours: 291/million, as opposed to Denmark at 87/million, and Norway at 40/million) possesses a culture in which the populace is generally far more receptive to voluntary restrictions than many other places in the world. The Swedes are simply better at following guidance from their government than are others. (The same is probably true of Canadians, which is one reason why we don't have people shooting security guards or assaulting park rangers over social distancing and face masks. And why our contagion and mortality rates are substantially lower than yours.)

The question of how tightly the economy should be shut down, and when it should be opened up, is entirely legitimate. It's not well served, however, by the selective serving up of statistics freed of all context.

This kind of argument itself exemplifies selective and misleading statistics free of context.  I used NY state, not city, but, by all means, use the wrong comparison to try and make your point.  Did you bother to look at anything but the most densely populated city in the US and improperly compare it to a state?  Did you, say, look at New Mexico, with triple the rate and a comparable population density to SD?  Of course you didn't.  Or did you similarly compare Louisiana to Iowa or Utah (two more states without statewide lockdowns) and their comparable population densities, yet, gosh, Louisiana is much higher in death rate?  Betting you didn't.  No, you pulled a statistic that isn't a proper comparison to attempt to bolster what you want to believe.  If it's about population density, why is Delaware, with about the same density as NY state (and a similar distribution between urban and rural population) so much lower in infection rate?  Or why NJ has 2.5 times the density as NY yet has a lower infection rate?  About half the population of NJ (in case you're not familiar) live in what is essentially "NYC across the Hudson".

A review of more than your cherry picked single data point makes it rather hard to credit population density as the controlling variable.

You're correct, arguments are not well served by selective serving up of statistics devoid of context, which is what you're attempting.  Nor are they well served by nebulous and unquantifiable assumptions and assertions.  For instance, you seriously want to argue that the Brits or Dutch and the Swedes are particularly different in terms of "obedience to authority" or timing of infections?  And, how does one quantify the supposed "obedience"?  Are we to believe that the differences in infection and "obedience" are significantly different between NJ and NY?  Right next door to each other, very similar politics, populations served (as you sort of pointed out) by the same airports and sea ports and train systems?  And similar restrictions.  Yet, significant differences in infection rates.  Hmmm, doesn't seem like death rate is all that dependent on any of the things you assert?  And surely you'd agree New Yorkers are more willing to conform to authority than people in, say, Texas, with 1/40th the infection rate.  And Texas is no slouch when it comes to enforcing lockdowns - they just jailed a salon operator for opening her business back up.

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27 minutes ago, Sassy Kenin said:

the-comfort-in-conformity-3-1600x900.jpg

 

Sheeple.jpg

Sassy are you saying that people who believe vaccinations are necessary and should be enforced are sheep?

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17 minutes ago, Tolya Ugajin said:

For instance, you seriously want to argue that the Brits or Dutch and the Swedes are particularly different in terms of "obedience to authority" or timing of infections?  And, how does one quantify the supposed "obedience"?

European countries do tend to trust their governments more, and so obeying or going along with government recommendations to a greater degree would follow from this trust.  Why do you think they trust their government more than we generally do in the US?

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I hope the development of a vaccine isn't the same kind of 💩show the rest of the response here has been. If the fast track it and cut corners so human trials take place at the Walgreens pharmacy counter, it's not only going to be anti-vaxxers who balk at it.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Sassy Kenin said:

the-comfort-in-conformity-3-1600x900.jpg

 

Sheeple.jpg

Really. And isn't that what anti-vaxxers are doing? They are just in a smaller flock, and a flock that eschews science, and a flock that denies evidence, and a flock that laughs at statements like "your rights end at the tip of my nose." Do YOUR rights extend past MY nose? Then guess what sweety, it works in reverse if that's the kind of world you want to live in. Your flock dislikes logic as well. Sorry that is mean and unfunny. I will lose sleep.

ETA: And please note, the edit is in clear site and flagged. Concept. I would wager a guess that Edward R. Murrow would be appalled at the FLOCK that has elected THIS particularly vicious pack of wolves to govern. Good quote, but wrong target for your little argument, if you can call it an argument.

Edited by Seicher Rae
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1 hour ago, kiramanell said:

 

I have very little to add. The above just needed restating.

Just in case you missed it, Sassy, the person posting the sheep etc. is an anti-vaxxer. She's calling informed, responsible people sheep...

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3 hours ago, Tolya Ugajin said:

...South Dakota) are in the lowest 10 states in terms of Covid death rate...

However, the Smithfield factory in SD, which didn't practice any kind of reasonable protective measures against the coronavirus, had at least at one time the biggest cluster of coronavirus cases in the country... 

There are lies, damnable lies, and statistics.

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And then a quote from the Bible to top it off!   America is such a twisted place. I'm having images of a virus that kills us all, staying within our borders.

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1 minute ago, Seicher Rae said:

Just in case you missed it, Sassy, the person posting the sheep etc. is an anti-vaxxer. She's calling informed, responsible people sheep...

 

Actually, I DID miss it. 😜 Thx for the heads-up. Corrected.

I suppose '55, stay alive!' doesn't mean anything to those ppl either, right?! Rather go out in blaze, going 100/mph, taking innocent ppl with you, than, OMG, be branded a sheep for acting responsibly! /sarcasm

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2 minutes ago, Seicher Rae said:

However, the Smithfield factory in SD, which didn't practice any kind of reasonable protective measures against the coronavirus, had at least at one time the biggest cluster of coronavirus cases in the country... 

There are lies, damnable lies, and statistics.

So what you're saying is that this essential business, which would have remained open in ANY state, accounts for the majority of that states deaths.  Correct - and which further proves the point.  I mean, unless you want to have no food production in the US and we can start eating out neighbors.

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1 minute ago, Tolya Ugajin said:

So what you're saying is that this essential business, which would have remained open in ANY state, accounts for the majority of that states deaths.  Correct - and which further proves the point.  I mean, unless you want to have no food production in the US and we can start eating out neighbors.

Huh?

I was addressing your statement about SD and other low populated states, and yes, while SD is low population it did also have a huge cluster at the Smithfield plant.

So, I'm not quite sure what point I proved further?

And as far as that plant goes, if they couldn't/wouldn't protect their employees better than they did then yes, that plant should have shut down. Have you read about that plant? It was pretty bad. Smithfield doesn't have a great record in employee conditions anyway. I don't know what they processed there, but they do make great bacon... and I wouldn't call it essential.

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4 minutes ago, Tolya Ugajin said:

So what you're saying is that this essential business, which would have remained open in ANY state, accounts for the majority of that states deaths.  Correct - and which further proves the point.  I mean, unless you want to have no food production in the US and we can start eating out neighbors.

Vagetarianism is the way to go.

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1 minute ago, Seicher Rae said:

@Tolya Ugajin I know you are fiscally conservative, but are you an anti-vaxxer as well?

Depends on the vaccine and the situation.  I don't take the flu shot, because I'm not particularly at risk.  I did have my kids immunized against pretty much everything, because they were.  One must weight the risks and rewards when making a decision.  Thus far, it seems there is no reward to keeping the economy shut down, yet the UN is projecting up to 130,000,000 additional deaths, not from the virus itself, but from starvation caused by the economic impacts of measures to fight it.

So, let me ask the SJW's among us, are a few hundred thousand projected (and we know how inaccurate the projections have been thus far) lives "saved" in Europe and North America, worth tens of millions starving to death in Africa, Asia, and Latin America?  https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/22/africa/coronavirus-famine-un-warning-intl/index.html

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1 minute ago, Tolya Ugajin said:

So, let me ask the SJW's among us, are a few hundred thousand projected (and we know how inaccurate the projections have been thus far) lives "saved" in Europe and North America, worth tens of millions starving to death in Africa, Asia, and Latin America?  https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/22/africa/coronavirus-famine-un-warning-intl/index.html

Suddenly you care about people outside of 'Murica?

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1 minute ago, Seicher Rae said:

Huh?

I was addressing your statement about SD and other low populated states, and yes, while SD is low population it did also have a huge cluster at the Smithfield plant.

So, I'm not quite sure what point I proved further?

And as far as that plant goes, if they couldn't/wouldn't protect their employees better than they did then yes, that plant should have shut down. Have you read about that plant? It was pretty bad. Smithfield doesn't have a great record in employee conditions anyway. I don't know what they processed there, but they do make great bacon... and I wouldn't call it essential.

That "huge cluster" was no more than 15 people.  See, the "huge cluster" was only huge because of the low population in the area.

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