JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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It’s not just lungs: Coronavirus can affect brains, may increase stroke risk

Sometimes the first sign of a serious coronavirus complication can be delirium and confusion.

Some kind of neurological effect is quite common with Covid-19 (CCP-flu).  As many as 30 – 60% of coronavirus cases may lose their sense of taste or smell. But now we should also look out for stroke type symptoms or confusion. This may be the first sign someone is in trouble with Covid-19.

Coronavirus can infect brain and nerve tissue, causing inflammation. And if it increases blood clotting then it could increase the risk of strokes as well.

NBC News

That was when she noticed her father, who had shown no previous signs of dementia, was largely unaware of what was happening around him.

There is growing evidence to suggest that COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, can affect not only the lungs, but the brain, too.

A recent study of 214 patients in Wuhan, China, where the pandemic started, found more than a third had neurologic manifestations of the disease, including loss of consciousness and stroke. Physicians in the U.S. have noted the same.

“We’re seeing a significant increase in the number of patients with large strokes,” Dr. Johanna Fifi, associate director of the cerebrovascular center at the Mount Sinai Health System in New York City, said.

Many are patients in their 30s and 40s. Over a recent two-week period, Fifi told NBC News she had five COVID-19 patients under age 49, all with strokes resulting from a blockage in one of the major blood vessels leading to the brain.

Not surprisingly the worst neurological complications are probably in ARDS severe cases:

 Neurologic Features in Severe SARS-CoV-2 Infection

April 15, 2020,    DOI: 10.1056/NEJMc2008597

We report the neurologic features in an observational series of 58 of 64 consecutive patients admitted to the hospital because of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) due to Covid-19.

In this consecutive series of patients, ARDS due to SARS-CoV-2 infection was associated with encephalopathy, prominent agitation and confusion, and corticospinal tract signs. Two of 13 patients who underwent brain MRI had single acute ischemic strokes. Data are lacking to determine which of these features were due to critical illness–related encephalopathy, cytokines, or the effect or withdrawal of medication, and which features were specific to SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Patients are not getting all their executive functioning back necessarily as they depart hospital either. ARDS patients go through a lot — being put into induced comas, paralyzed, and having just enough oxygen pumped in to keep them alive — so it’s no wonder a third of them are not operating at full speed on departure.

“Of the patients who had been discharged at the time of this writing, 15 of 45 (33%) had had a dysexecutive syndrome consisting of inattention, disorientation, or poorly organized movements in response to command.”

After brain damage, cognitive skills can keep improving for up to a year or two as inflammation subsides and the brain adapts. We hope this happens after Coronavirus ARDS events. But this is another one of the unknowns about a new virus. What damage is permanent?

Some neurological effects were found in the first round of SARS, even in young healthy people

About 5% of SARS patients back in 2004 experienced central nervous system symptoms. In one case a 39 year old doctor developed all the usual symptoms, was hospitalized, then developed vision problems and “progressively worse central nervous system symptoms, like restlessness and delirium. A computed tomography scan indicated brain damage. He died about a month after being hospitalized, and his brain tissue was examined and found to contain the SARS coronavirus.”

Most people get their sense of smell back, but some are still waiting:

Coronavirus patients are waiting weeks for their sense of smell to recover

Mike Wehner

As CNN reports, some coronavirus victims have been waiting for their sense of smell to return for weeks, and fears of permanent loss of smell are spreading.

Those fears may seem extreme, but they’re not unwarranted. As Professor Steven Munger of the University of Florida’s Center for Smell and Taste told CNN, sensory changes caused by an illness can hang around for a long time.

“What we’ve known for a long time is one of the major causes of smell loss are upper respiratory tract infections due to viruses — a common cold, influenza — a subset of people lose their sense of smell, most of them temporarily, but a small subset lose that smell permanently,” Munger explains.

 Tough job for the coroner

Right now, in both New York and the UK, the all-cause mortality rates are higher than we’d expect due to Coronavirus. It could be that people who are getting heart attacks and strokes for other reasons are afraid to go to hospital out of fear of catching Coronavirus. But it also may be that Coronavirus could be causing strokes or heart failure itself. And unpacking how much is one or the other will often be impossible. If someone has a preexisting stroke risk and coronavirus pushes them over the edge, how much do we blame Coronavirus? It would take an indepth autopsy, and even then it may be impossible to tell.

Years from now someone will trace mortality rates through this and look for a long tail (or a reduction) in deaths following the pandemic in heart attacks and strokes. Only then might we get an idea of how many years of life were stolen by this virus.

 It’s another reason to crush the curve until we learn more.

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Rating: 9.0/10 (53 votes cast)
It's not just lungs: Coronavirus can affect brains, may increase stroke risk, 9.0 out of 10 based on 53 ratings

383 comments to It’s not just lungs: Coronavirus can affect brains, may increase stroke risk

  • #
    Broadie

    You lock down or scare the elderly and poor into sealing themselves in and restricting their access to fresh air, you force them to cook at home, you make them choose a cheap form of heating and you may get the odd case of Flu like symptoms.

    https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Carbon-monoxide-poisoning/

    Breathing in high levels of carbon monoxide gas can cause more severe symptoms.

    These may include:

    impaired mental state and personality changes (intoxication)
    the feeling that you or the environment around you is spinning (vertigo)
    loss of physical co-ordination caused by underlying damage to the brain and nervous system (ataxia)
    breathlessness and a heart rate of more than 100 beats per minute (tachycardia)
    chest pain caused by angina or a heart attack
    an uncontrollable burst of electrical activity in the brain that causes muscle spasms (seizures)
    loss of consciousness – in cases where there are very high levels of carbon monoxide, death may occur within minutes

    Sound familiar? From the same NHS site.

    The symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are not always obvious, particularly during low-level exposure.

    A tension-type headache is the most common symptom of mild carbon monoxide poisoning.

    Other symptoms include:

    dizziness
    feeling and being sick
    tiredness and confusion
    stomach pain
    shortness of breath and difficulty breathing

    The symptoms of exposure to low levels of carbon monoxide can be similar to those of food poisoning and flu.

    But unlike flu, carbon monoxide poisoning does not cause a high temperature.

    162

    • #
      C. Paul Barreira

      Broadie, I’m not sure I understand your point. Is Jo—heaven forbid—wrong somewhere in this post?

      71

      • #
        PeterS

        No Jo is not necessarily wrong; just focusing too much on one side of the picture and trying too hard to find any death that can be directly attributed to the virus. It’s a waste of time since it will take years of research and study to know the truth.

        198

        • #

          Broadie, and if they had carbon monoxide poisoning, the treatment is just to give them oxygen.
          But these patients die anyway. We give them oxygen but they also need antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs, anti clotting agents and anti-virals.

          The people collapsing in the street are not dying of CO poisoning.

          PeterS — did you miss this this and this post? I am looking at both sides, and explaining why one side is consistent, while the other cherry picks non-randomized inadequate studies with inexplicable adjustments, ignoring main factors (age) and extrapolating far beyond the confidence intervals.

          Unfortunately we can’t wait years to find the truth, in the Fog of an exponential Black Swan we must work with what we have and decide now.

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          • #
            PeterS

            SO you agree with me that we can’t wait for years and keep our economy in a comma. Good to hear.

            83

          • #
            ian hilliar

            The virus accesses the brain via the cribriform fossa, (loss of sense of smell initially) and thence to the base of the brain. If you are unlucky… A very nasty virus, with the infectivity of measles, but luckily it attacks the oldest (esp males) rather than the younger groups. I Am afraid it is pretty well unstoppable, when it gets into a nursing home, especially as early infection in nursing staff may be asymptomatic, without even a fever. I guess the only good thing is that very few people will die of influenza this years, as those susceptible will have already gone. Influenza tends to kill between 700 and 1400 Australians, every flu season So far, this “Wuhan flu” has killed about 80, but mostly from floating petri dishes or from nursing homes. And when the press announces another death of a 94 year old man in a nursing home, there is never any mention of co morbidities, as if they are all still totally independent , well functioning 94 year olds ……in nursing homes. The only protection is to keep the oldies virtual prisoners,….”.for their own good”. And if they cannot be allowed to take the risks and see their relatives, then life in “God’s waiting rooms’ becomes even more odious.

            100

          • #
            Broadie

            Thanks Jo,
            Apologies for not replying sooner. I am involved in dealing within the Health Industry with the fall out of this pandemic and also assisting a Dairy Farm that has suffered from two scares ago, the drought.

            I come back to this which indicates COVID-19 is present in Washington State at about 10% of those presenting for testing. This is not an epidemic of this virus by these figures rather an established contagion.

            https://depts.washington.edu/labmed/covid19/

            So what factors are causing the deaths outside the WHO desire to label deaths as from and not with viral RNA.
            I wonder about an increasingly Diabetic Aging population living in cold confined cities and displaying the symptoms you have highlighted and Carbon Monoxide poisoning would likely add to the death toll.
            Happy to be wrong.

            31

    • #
      sophocles

      Broadie:

      What scientific support do you have for your … hypothesis? Papers?

      Otherwise:
      You should stop smoking.
      Don’t just think about it but do it.
      That alone will raise your blood levels of oxygen and rapidly reduce those of carboxyhaemoglobin.
      It might save your life, too.

      22

  • #
    Mal

    Crush the curve, but at what cost to the rest of society?

    225

    • #
      Steve of Cornubia

      Who do you mean by, “… the rest of society.”?

      Surely the lockdown and social distancing regulations are designed to protect everybody, i.e. the whole of “society”?

      614

      • #
        Kalm Keith

        Steve, possibly referring to “other aspects of society” : schooling, sport and recreation, small business: all disrupted, many broken?

        155

      • #
        MudCrab

        As Far As Is Reasonably Practical.

        If you are not familiar with that phrase then you have probably never professionally been involved in risk reduction.

        31

    • #
      PeterS

      We have crushed the curve, there can be no doubt about that. As to what cost, well we already have a hint of that but it was unavoidable and was necessary. We now need to focus on an exit strategy.

      85

      • #
        dadgervais

        If the imposed restrictions can succeed in making AU covid-free, then it would seem worth your effort to continue on and eliminate every virus which is similarly transmitted. Sort of the Swedish experiment in reverse.

        Australia could become the healthiest and longest lived (though perhaps the poorest) population on Earth.

        87

        • #
          PeterS

          No way in the world wee could get to zero viruses let alone stay at that level forever. Be realistic mate.

          96

          • #

            PeterS, and yet Australia has no Ebola, Rabies, Small pox, Polio.

            We have satellites and a navy and can enforce quarantine at airports. Few places on Earth are better placed than we are to keep coronavirus out.

            105

            • #
              PeterS

              So what’s your point? The moon is even a better place to keep the virus out.

              66

            • #
              ian hilliar

              Jo, do you never want to fly overseas ever again, and to refuse entry to all visitors from abroad, forever? This virus , whether it started in a lab in Wuhan, or a wet market, will be around forever, just like the flu. And, after 30 years of research, our fluvaccines leave a lot to be desired. I have flu shots every year, and have done for about 12 or 15 years, yet I had Influenza A last year AND the year before. (And ,yes, serologically confirmed both years) . So, we are, one day or another, going to have to learn to live with it, or die of it. I am now only 64, but two of my sons (both GPs) keep telling me I should quit GP land now, as I do have a number of minor problems that are major risk factors. Being the optimist I am,I think we will get this country working again very soon, though it is very difficult for politicians to liberalise anything, knowing the press will hammer them for EVERY life “lost”

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              • #
              • #

                Ian, My policy was and still is to Crush the Curve (please commenters — read it again). Then if we can get rid of the virus, which is looking very possible in Australia with our mass testing, strong borders, large moat, and now repeat zero new cases in several states. It’s partly our luck — the virus hit in summer, I suspect we got a nicer strain than NY and Italy and we have a low pop density. Whatever — we have the chance. If we don’t take it, we may get the winter double flu and corona deal. Our best shot is now.

                So if we can get rid of it in the next few weeks, then the economic damage can be minimized.

                Knowing the virus survives for around two weeks, can we exterminate it here? I think it’s surely worth a go, because the payoff could be great. We get 99% of our freedom back. All our resturants, gyms, shops and cafes. We lose foreign tourists and foreign holidays but we can be tourists in own country and trade overseas as per normal. Even foreign students can come in after a two week quarantine.

                And this was always a temporary arrangement. It’s not and has never been a “forever” thing. We just need to hold the fort til we will beat this virus (or improve the odds dramatically), it’s just a matter of time. If not through a vaccine, then anti-virals, CRISPR, Monoclonal antibodies, Stem CElls, RNAi, Anti-virals, anti-virals, and then more anti-virals. And the virus is mutating. It may well become a respectable endemic virus all by itself. We just need to buy time.

                In the meantime some nations will have killed tens of thousands in a risky search for herd immunity, which may not even exist, and which comes at a price in lives they cannot even calculate yet. We hope it is not fruitless and coronavirus does not hit the same people again next year. We just don’t know.

                I said all this a month ago: http://joannenova.com.au/2020/03/stop-with-the-fatalism-dont-flatten-it-crush-the-curve-on-coronavirus/ (Not so much directed at you Ian, as others here who keep asking the same questions).

                Forgive me, it is a bit frustrating consistently saying the same thing.

                20

              • #
                Bill In Oz

                Which is the reason Jo,
                Why I keep wondering what the
                ‘Vested interests’ of these 4-5 people
                Who keep criticising your strategy
                Of eliminating this foreign virus.

                00

            • #
              Sunni Bakchat

              Jo, When testing is conducted in Australia in a manner that provides comprehensive statistical confirmation of near eradication of Covid-19, the proposition you are putting forward will be more credible. Until then, the assumption Covid-19 will continue to replicate within Australia without foreign assistance is more likely realistic.

              I you really want to compare; Ebola arguably has far lower transmissability than covid-19. Smallpox took the better part of a thousand years to eradicate. Polio only took a few hundred years and still occasionally appears in Australia.

              72

        • #
          TedM

          As many viruses are endemic, getting rid of them all just isn’t going to happen.

          94

          • #

            TedM, viruses we can control. Deafeatism though, appears to be endemic… :-)

            126

            • #
              TedM

              I think you misinterpreted the intent of my comment Jo, although maybe I didn’t make it clear. I was replying to dadgervais at 10.17.

              ” then it would seem worth your effort to continue on and eliminate every virus which is similarly transmitted.”

              41

            • #
              Sunni Bakchat

              Jo, realism is an orthodoxy with far greater pragmatic acceptance than the absolutism you are for. To suggest thinking otherwise is defeatist is entirely epistemologically flawed. By all means lets eradicate viruses where we can. But please give me a detailed cost/benefit analysis justifying same before advocating for “chasing the tail” on this virus.

              72

              • #
                Bill In Oz

                As you are in Switzerland
                Why does any one of us here in Australia
                Owe you a detailed cost benefit analysis.?
                Crushing the virus is working here
                And so we will continue to do what works.
                Just tune in to what the PM says in his daily briefings.

                But from 17,0000 ks away
                You express your doubts and demand change to
                The.’epistemologically’ acceptable…
                but no one is listening mate.

                00

            • #
              Ross

              Crazy isn’t it? Seems like your followers don’t believe the accepted science Jo. No amount of logic will turn them either. I can well understand your frustration, but you raised them.

              10

          • #

            TedM – what an odd thing to write. It is exactly re-written as, “we can’t get rid of the things we can’t get rid of” ie that is what the endemic viruses are.

            covid-19 might become endemic in places or everywhere, sure, we don’t know enough about the future to exclude the possibility. What is highly certain is that at this moment in time we can act to eradicated from regions where such action is possible, Australia being one such region.

            103

            • #
              el gordo

              Exactly, well said.

              Isolationism may become the new norm at a micro level, social engineering has a future. At the macro level, nation states might practice distancing, Oceania can become a Covid-19 free zone.

              32

            • #
              TedM

              Complete misinterpretation of my comment which was a reply to dadgervais 2.2.1. at 10.17 Please read in context.

              50

      • #
        bobl

        The curve is ALL we crushed unless the NH summer wipes this out (unlikely in places like Alaska and Russia) it’ll be back each winter. We can’t afford to take this approach to management. There likely isn’t a vaccine approach to managing this disease and so I expect the only way will be a new over the counter medicine, perhaps a quinine derivative or perhaps gin and tonic will reemerge as a preventative medicine as it was originally for malaria.

        It may even be necessary to introduce a prophylactic into the food supply (mass medicate), It’s a not uncommon approach, eg Iodised salt or the toxin fluoride in our drinking water (which makes town water totally undrinkable for me). Governments seem fine about adding a deadly toxin to our water for something as benign as dental carries so they should have no trouble adding quinine somewhere for ACE2 viruses.

        Why the specifics? I read a study that showed that quinine alters the glycolosis of the ACE 2 receptor so viral attachment is blocked. ( In vitro ).

        I quite like bitter lemon so getting Schweppes to distribute the prophylactic is fine by me.

        PS I wonder what happens if you expose a human to the original ancestor of this bioengineered virus – the bat virus before the s protein was modified, would this be like cowpox is to smallpox? Does anyone care to try in the age of the snowflake.

        143

        • #
          Sceptical Sam

          I read a study that showed that quinine alters the glycolosis of the ACE 2 receptor so viral attachment is blocked. ( In vitro ).

          Got a link, bobl?

          42

  • #

    Australia may need to self isolate for up to 2 years

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8240269/Australia-trouble-relaxes-coronavirus-restrictions-soon-flattening-curve.html

    We have a couple of care homes near us and the care workers often seen outside having a cigarette say people are refusing to go to hospital no matter how Ill they may be.

    132

    • #
      PeterS

      Self isolate for 2 years? Doesn’t he mean keep the borders closed for 2 years but relax restrictions within Australia to get some of the economy back on steam? If he means keep the restrictions we currently have in place for as long as it takes to get the deaths down to zero, and that could be for 2 years then he has to be insane.

      161

      • #

        Two years of self isolation just means Australia needs to say no to incoming tourists and migrants who don’t spend two weeks in quarantine.

        Once the virus is extinguished we get life 99% normal.

        Why would anyone want to live with a deadly virus circulating that means old folks must be locked up, and everyone is afraid to use our hospitals?

        96

        • #
          OriginalSteve

          I think we just have to take a bit of a hit, and manage the most vulnerable in our society tightly.

          If you work to 100% eradication, you will also eradicate your standard of living and economy.

          I notice govts around the world appear to be pointing directly at the communist party of china, as the source of the virus.

          How long before war breaks out I wonder?

          63

        • #
          PeterS

          Jo, are you proposing we maintain our heavy restrictions until we extinguish the virus or not? You are not be consistent or clear here. Please try to be clearer on what you feel we should be doing. Otherwise, we are just talking about cross purposes. No one here wants to see a blow-out on the pandemic. So be realistic please.

          73

          • #
            Bill In Oz

            Peter you can’t read.
            Or maybe you cannot remember what you have read in her comments.
            Jo has always wanted a short sharp quarantine.
            To exclude the Wuhan Virus carriers.

            But having not done that until a tad too late
            The quarantine & lockdown need to be longer
            To get rid of it completely here.

            And that is working..
            As indicated by the gradual lower numbers each day
            For the states and for Australia.
            In my opinion, Mid May will see most of the internal lock down regs. shut down

            25

          • #
            Environment Skeptic

            I second that. Please be realistic Jo. If we could indeed proclaim Australia a planet, independent of the earth i might cautiously agree with an extreme lock-down attitude.

            32

            • #

              Guys, a lot of people are misreading my comments. Almost like they didn’t read my posts so they have no context.

              My position has been utterly consistent, optimistic (apart from my fear that the government would stuff up).

              We will beat this (or it will mutate) and I’m proposing life to be 99% normal soon in Australia and wishing our summer luck on the northern disaster zones.

              Maintaining a two week border quarantine for months or even two years, while life is otherwise normal inside Australia, is hardly an extreme lock-down.

              If we can’t maintain our borders with satellites, drones, the RAAF and a navy, then we need to talk about our defense forces, those stupid subs, and the incompetent planes .

              20

        • #
          PeterS

          Once the virus is extinguished we get life 99% normal.

          And if it’s not eliminated until we can have a vaccine, which might be years away? Please be realistic Jo.

          64

        • #
          Sunni Bakchat

          Jo, it sounds as though not only is the science settled; but also the economics and sociology. We’re left with the impossibility of hyperbole in such logical worlds. Reminds me again of Lewis Carroll – “Let me see: four times five is twelve, and four times six is thirteen, and four times seven is—oh, dear! I shall never get to twenty at that rate!…London is the capital of Paris, and Paris is the capital of Rome, and Rome—no that’s all wrong, I’m certain. I must have been changed for Mabel!”

          32

      • #
        tonyb

        PeterS

        That is why I said ‘Australia needs to self isolate’ that is as a country not the individuals within it staying within their houses. That all assumes that vaccine or anti virals or whatever comes along. I make no comment as to the effect on external tourism although I have asked here what the effect is expected to be on your economy of measures taken so far and if they were continued

        41

      • #
        markx

        Of course it will be controlled. As SARS, MERS and Ebola are/were monitored and controlled, so will COVID-19 be. It rapidly became more widespread, it may be more infectious, but as more is known the methodology will develop into logical procedures.

        The vast majority of developed countries are gradually bringing it under control within their borders. As antigen testing becomes more readily available, and antibody testing is ramped up adn the immune processes and longevity of immunity is understood and sensible case and contact tracking procedures are put in place, it will be monitored and controlled. Borders will be re-opened firstly to countries with proven status and ongoing monitoring procedures, and flare ups will be dealt with.

        It is not impossible, it is not rocket science, and it can be done. We can stuff it up, but there is no need to.

        That is not to say there’s not a virus out there which we will one day encounter and NOT be able to deal with, but COVID-19 has provided a timely warning to the world, and our chances of being able to deal with future challenges will be enhanced.

        Now go and watch Jeff Gibb’s film on ‘Green’ energy and work out how we finally get the world to accept nuclear power.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zk11vI-7czE&fbclid=IwAR1gpNNvLc4Dfv4x5jdYQIRk4Br9i61ATQs9H_YiBUTePmAd28acXJNQCZ8

        10

    • #

      Can you imagine the uproar from the ‘precious’ tourist industry, wanting their Billions to keep flowing from foreign tourists if there’s a two year period where isolation is in place.

      Imagine ALL incoming tourists from overseas (anywhere) having to spend two weeks in isolation first before their tourist holiday. (well, realistically, there goes the holiday then, eh!)

      The tourist Industry would be in absolute total uproar if they tried to impose those sorts of restrictions.

      It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase at the airport for incoming tourists, (every single one of them, young and old) to have all your documentation ready, because NOW, that should include health documentation as well, MANDATORY, otherwise, isolation.

      NO EXEMPTIONS.

      Now, STILL imagine the uproar from the tourist industry saying that you just can’t do that. You can’t offend all that money those tourists

      Similarly, this should also apply to foreign students, keeping in mind that there are two million Chinese students in Australia.

      There’s just too much money to be made from all this, so restrictions of this scale they will tell us hurt both their industries.

      Also, now imagine all those rich people especially celebrities, looking for somewhere ‘safe’ to hunker down, where this Wuhan Virus looks to have been tamed more than in their own Countries. Watch the internet airway radar for all those private planes flocking here. (I’m a celebrity. Those rules don’t apply to me)

      Tony.

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      • #
        Bill In Oz

        Thanks Tony for your accurate
        And slightly cynical take
        On our ‘beloved’ tourist industry !

        Their message is simple
        WE have a right to our industry
        Even if it is guaranteed to bring
        This foreign virus & disease
        Back to Australia
        To main & kill us !

        18

        • #
          Bill In Oz

          And could this be the source of PeterS’
          Agitation to abandon the lock down
          An undeclared vested interest in the tourism sector ?
          Or the Foreign student education sector ?
          Certainly I am suspicious !

          47

          • #
            Kalm Keith

            Wow: extremely functional.

            13

          • #
            Yonniestone

            In Orwell’s 1984 borders were closed there was no tourism industry and everyone seemed well adjusted…..sarc\.

            51

            • #
              PeterS

              Many here apparently prefer it that way. Harsh lock downs until the virus is eliminated. I prefer the precautionary approach now be applied to the lock downs to take it one step at a time and get our economies growing again. We can’t withstand negative growths indefinitely for obvious reasons.

              61

              • #
                PeterS

                OK looks like one vote so for a continuation of the lock downs until the virus is eliminated at all costs, and none for the realistic and practical approach Any others?

                41

              • #
                OriginalSteve

                The insidiousness of this virus is that to truly eradicate it, the whole country should be shut down for 6 months and every single person tested.

                However…that is not feasible or practical, and more than 2 months of shutdown is economy destroying.

                I have friends who work in Cyber Security. The safest systems are those that don’t touch the outside world, but we aren’t North Korea, so….
                However, pragmatism has to rule, so a balance is struck, extra security monitoring is performed and vigilance is maintained.
                The powers that be sign off on the risk, accepting it, and push on.

                We are in a similar state of affairs, we need to balance usability of our lives with some extra *temporary* security.
                ( I’d also like to point out the clumsily-handled “snitch-ware” they were proposing is laughable, and never going to work )

                So here we are. Real world says be smart, not oppressive.

                50

              • #
                tonyb

                Peter

                I haven’t seen a recent figure for the likely effect on your economy if the restrictions were eased mid may or continued in one form or another for 3 more months. Has there been a credible real world estimate of the immediate and long term impacts?

                30

              • #
                PeterS

                Good post OriginalSteve. I fully agree with your viewpoints.

                20

              • #
                PeterS

                tonyb, yes there was one – the Great Depression. We have the opportunity to avoid another by getting back to business in a controlled fashion over the next month or so. There is no way of knowing if it will be enough – only time will tell. I think it will be but talks of maintaining lock downs much longer or until the virus is eradicated is pure nonsense.

                20

              • #
                tonyb

                Peter

                I agree with you about the devastating impact on the economy but there must be current real world figures that will show the short term hit and the longer term effect.

                11

      • #
        Ted O'Brien.

        Don’t forget that I, with my dream of going for a Long Slow Drive, see myself as part of that tourist industry.

        60

    • #
      WXcycles

      Some ‘newspaper’ rag making ridiculous claims is hardly ‘news’, nor credible. We will not be isolating for two years, people will be travelling globally as soon as effective antivirals are in mass production, and people accept the need for quarantine on return, or don’t travel.

      102

      • #
        PeterS

        Agree but many here prefer to keep the restrictions in place until the virus is eliminated. Go figure.

        42

        • #
          TedM

          “but many here prefer to keep the restrictions in place until the virus is eliminated.”

          PeterS you should have added or until we have an effective vaccine or effective anti virals.
          That has been the thrust of this blog almost since the beginning of this topic.

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          • #
            PeterS

            A viable vaccine might not be available for many months or even years. What then? Go back to the stone age? Then the Greens would have won. In any case even if we had a vaccine tomorrow it will take many months to manufacture and distribute to everyone. We can’t wait that long.

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      Doc

      I think ‘eradication’ is looking very tempting to the powers that be currently.
      It looks inviting with so few cases; just a few more weeks! But in reality,
      maintaining eradication would be almost impossible. It’s not just tourists by
      air or sea. The nation would have to basically seal itself off from everywhere.
      We are a trading nation. Our universities are full of foreign students. Ships
      and planes come and go with goods – and crews. Foreign airlines come and go
      With people in both directions. Indeed, this is going to be the biggest headache
      once we open up again. Safeguarding the nation simply against recurrences is
      going to be gargantuan in itself. It will always be the same problem: Asymptomatic
      infected people spreading the virus as they enter the nation. How are cruise ships
      going to stay clean? Yet, the nation has to live, to trade, to thrive. We have to
      open up again. The young and fit , the workers and families, they have to have
      a life. People will not tolerate isolation forever. We oldies similarly have the same
      choice. Get out and about, knowing the risk ; or lock ourselves away and wonder
      if life is worth living, and probably die from boredom or venous thrombosis due to
      sitting looking at the idiot box and replays of ‘Days of our Lives’!

      I keep reading it’s almost impossible to find
      a safe vaccine for these upper airway viruses because this part of the body
      is virtually a continuum of the skin rather than being an internal organ. This
      is a different and difficult area to have antibody protection where a virus
      needs to be knocked out before getting to the lungs. Most leaking of news
      around hydroxychloro. usage is turning negative due to high dose risk. We
      still await an effective therapy. A part of the vaccine problem also is that often
      the trials show the bug gets smacked but the reaction excites an overwhelming
      immune reaction as well and that is as lethal as the original problem . Indeed,
      this virus seems to kill by the same mechanism.

      Not trying to be a wet blanket, but without any treatments nor vaccines, this virus
      is going to be with us a long while it seems, unless we get a modern medical
      miracle. Our governments should never again be caught out in such a totally
      unprepared state for staff safety equipment and ventilators. Once we have to open
      up to the world we will no doubt get plenty of continuing practice at virus
      bushfire suppression. We have to trade, so we have to acknowledge the dangers.
      As someone said today, it may be a very long time before we get back to
      shaking hands and hugs as greetings. That’s a very big social loss for we
      westerners. I wonder what courting is like at 1-2 m, and nudging elbows!

      30

      • #
        ian hilliar

        The high dose Chloroquine studies were done on severely ill people, just prior to being ventilated. Read through the “abandoned” study, it is a total joke. Waste of time trying to treat people “with one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.”

        50

      • #
        WXcycles

        The nation would have to basically seal itself off from everywhere. We are a trading nation.

        Metal containers and metal coverings get extremely hot in the sun in minutes (Above 60 deg C is the norm, same as with closed cars in the sun), there will be no virus transmission within those via sea or by road. Being a trading nation will make no difference, the virus will be eliminated in transit. the main danger is aircraft and freezer transport and those can be limited and controlled.

        Our universities are full of foreign students.

        So, they serve an adequate quarantine period, no ifs or but, certainty assured, no virus enters.

        Ships and planes come and go with goods – and crews.

        Crews are not permitted off the ship, they are not on a holiday, they are working.

        Airlines are responsible for keeping airline crews in strict Isolation with proper PPE. Breaches = millions in fines, potentially grounded, thus staff will be sacked from breaches or given leave without pay for months as punishments. Federal airways inspectors keep the airline crews in line on every flight or layover. All doable.

        Foreign airlines come and go

        Uncontrollable inbound foreign airlines not permitted a flight plan to Australia, all passengers must use an Australia registered aircraft under federal inspection and control from before departure.

        With people in both directions.

        And all serve a quarantine period on return unless that are airline crews wearing full PPE the entire time in contact with the public. Aircraft treated with anti viral fog, or else a heat-soak treatment after each flight. A black tarp covering in the sun for a few hours over a black pavement will do this in a few hours most days.

        If airlines want to operate they will comply and pass on the costs, and if people want to the travel they must comply and take on the added cost and time penalty.

        None of these objections are impediments, we are not going to allow the virus back in, and it can be kept out. We’ll adapt practices plus develop cheaper more efficient implementations, but this will occur Doc.

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        • #
          Doc

          All contrarian thoughts welcome, WXcycles, but the itemisation of what can and
          would have to be done shows just what an exceptionally complex, difficult and
          expensive task the nation would face. The bureaucracy itself would be huge.

          The other part of the piece I missed. It is being reported frequently that there is
          unlikely to be long term immunity from this virus. It is found there is limited
          antibody response such that most would possibly get a few months, depending
          on the strength of the infection fought. Hence the few might last immune for a year or two.
          Looking at the influenza vaccine, it only lasts a few months, but that’s due to mutations.
          COVID-19 is said to be independent of hot or cold weather which is unlikely to mean
          it will be seasonal, so crowding will be its forte for spread. It survives by the furtive
          early infection spread. That contact spread problem could require an army of sleuths.
          We need that vaccine to economically wipe this dirty little piece of nothingness out.
          As Murphy said this morning, the Tasmanian flare-up was due to the high infectivity
          of this virus. Being furtive, it’s gone on a spreading spree before you even know it’s there.

          20

          • #
            WXcycles

            … but the itemisation of what can and would have to be done shows just what an exceptionally complex, difficult and expensive task the nation would face. The bureaucracy itself would be huge.

            Many hands make lite work, all complex challenges becomes simpler and achievable that way. No part of this is beyond effective human adaptation and new processes, it’ll become the routine. As to the Tasmanian snafu people got a lesson there, they’ll remain isolated longer than the rest of Australia due to this. They won’t make that mistake again. There will be more cases of that to come, but localized, not national, not even state-wide. We’ll open in 3 weeks and the virus will be contained by isolations if it pops up somewhere. The hospitals will get back to normal care as well. International tourism and airlines will take a big hit, but those are nice-to-haves, not the essential components of our $1.6 trillion economy. We will undoubtedly grow back though a significant recession, but we will adapt and grow back through it. If we only had a $1.4 trillion economy in the 4th quarter, that’s still about $500 billion GDP more than ~12 years ago. And what’s changed? Mostly just balance sheets. Unemployment is higher, revenue lower, so time to stimulate small business regrowth.

            Add effective affordable antivirals drugs to that and everything looks better faster.

            10

            • #
              DOC

              I don’t fault your argument WX, BUT….

              What has undeniably changed is Federal government debt; going out possibly to
              a $1T. That means our easy money days are over. Creeping taxes, or we actually
              decide as a nation to work and produce at competitive rates, and we grow our
              industrial base. Whatever we do, there is no more loose money for decades.
              Health costs will blow out further until we get protection. As for Tasmania, history
              is made only to be repeated. 3 year election cycles soon blow history away in the hunt for votes. I make a problem today; you have to fix it tomorrow. So long as I can
              buy a vote. When Gillards Labor looked like losing the election they lost, we got
              Gonski and two other huge expenditure policies that the then Opposition signed on
              to as the cost of winning that election. That’s reality.

              BTW, I’m all for anything to beat this virus. But we have to realise many things are promised from our modern medical science, but it is headbutting the human body in all
              its complexity and a simple little bit of script that it so far has been found inadequate to overcome. ASk a computer how easy is it to defeat a human brain – after
              50years. That’s just one part of the organism.

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  • #
    SteveS

    Don’t think listing dozens of possible “Covid” signs from dizziness, senior moments, to “covid” toes is really going to help anyone. These are all common factors in the elderly, best to use the general guidelines provided.
    Are we coming close to “Jumping the shark” here ?

    Australia is fortunate you have the option to eradicate the virus. Based on localized spread, it’s a good shot.
    Other countries were too far gone to even attempt eradication for various reasons.

    The only potential problem I see is your into several months of shutdown already as your winter flu season is approaching…a resurgence or possible second wave would require more lockdown. Economies don’t have that kind of resiliency to hang dormant for 6 months.

    On the plus side, the more delay, the more we know, the more effective the treatment becomes.

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  • #
    Sunni Bakchat

    The symptoms described sound like Hypercapnia resulting from Hypoventilation (1). Which if the disease brings about Hypoxia type illness, would be expected.
    Hypercapnia might also explain wild hallucinogenic dreams anecdotally reported by some covid-19 patients.

    A nasopharyngeal Nitric Oxide deficiency causing inflammation would plausibly cause temporary hyposmia or anosmia (2 and 3).
    The downregulation of Nitric Oxide is hypothetically understood to occur in covid-19 patients, leading to an uncontrolled or runaway inflammatory response, primarily in the lungs. See post on HAPE theory last week.

    Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation is also shown as a secondary effect in patients with severe respiratory distress (4).

    (1) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypercapnia
    (2)https://www.researchgate.net/publication/261184388_Nasal_nitric_oxide_is_associated_with_exhaled_NO_bronchial_responsiveness_and_poor_asthma_control
    (3) http://www.tasteandsmell.com/feb2013.htm
    (4) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/984062

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Interesting to read a science baed comment from you Sunni.
      Thanks !

      38

    • #
      Mal

      Winter coming
      We have some 3000 people die of the flu in Australia every year during the winter flu season
      Most are in nursing homes or care facilities
      Are we going to attribute every death over the winter period to the covoid virus

      Remember, we lose 165000 people every year.
      Most from cardio vascular, cancer, respiratory diseases

      We are obsessed with this virus basically of unkowns

      But we are getting to know more about it
      Maybe in a few years time when we get through this and look back on the statistics.
      We may find the total annual death rate may not to be statistically different to the 165000

      41

      • #
        Bill In Oz

        The interesting thing is
        That every aged care home in Australia
        Has been in almost complete lock down
        Because of the Wuhan Covid 19 virus.
        And there has been a major drop in all infectious diseases
        In Australia’s aged care homes as a result.
        Complete lock down is not something I would recommend for controlling flu deaths as a rule
        But this is an interesting accidental discovery.

        PS All staff at aged care homes have to get vaccinated each year.
        So it is not the staff who bring it in.

        23

        • #
          Doc

          The problem comes with this virus. It has no vaccine currently. It is highly
          infectious and it has a latency period in which it is infectious but not apparent
          to the infected that they carry it. It is almost a perfect design for spread in
          people confined spaces without detection of its carriers. It is designed for
          crowds in hospitals, sports stadiums, concert halls and political meetings,
          and dining rooms.
          As an aside, this virus is so smart it’s why the government is pushing its app
          for helping ease the difficulty of effective contact detection.if one really seeks
          eradication, as a possibility, you need to sign up. If you want to live with the
          virus, then you have an almost age dependent choice.

          10

      • #
        PeterS

        Obsession is the key word. So many are so obsessed with the virus they lose sight of common sense. In any case there’s no point speculating how we could have done it better or whether we ought to wipe out the virus completely when clearly we never will until at least we have a vaccine. We now need to turn our focus on an exit strategy.

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        • #

          Repeat #27: Vaccine not necessary. We have CRISPR, monoclonal antibodies, stem cells, RNAi and antivirals, plus more anti-virals, plus even sheep dip is antiviral.

          But most importantly we will have zero viruses.

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          • #
            bobl

            Don’t forget my favourite – tea tree oil. It’s antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and UWA found it active against cancer (Melanoma). A miracle drug just like Aspirin. I would not be surprised if you could formulate a treatment from TTO to fight this infection, perhaps as an inhalant like Ventolin.

            Don’t take the raw tto from the chemist though, concentrated TTO is poisonous in large enough doses and is cytotoxic (can kill cells it comes in contact with). Doctors would need to work out concentration and dose

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            • #
              Bill In Oz

              Bob, Tea Tree Oil has been one of my favorite home remedies for 40 odd years.
              But it is not recommended for internal use
              Because it is toxic.
              Working out the dose which would be effective against this Wuhan virus but not toxic, would need research.
              And of course it is not patentable so the research is not very likely.

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              • #
                Fred Streeter

                I AM NOT RECOMMENDING THIS!

                but I know of someone who claims to take 3 drops of TTO in hot water (Just the once!) to shift a “bug” that won’t respond to conventional treatment.

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              • #
                bobl

                Um I can’t recommend my home remedies either, but I add a few drops to eucalyptus oil in a vaporiser for any cold or flu and I make a tea from a medicinal tea tree Melaleuca Alternifolia that I grew in my yard as a gargle for sore throats or toothache.

                Together they beat just about anything. Since the warnings say you shouldn’t take TTO internally I can’t recommend this to anyone else other than to say it works for me and it should be studied as a possible treatment for lots of things including COVID-19 and cancer.

                PS regarding toxicity LD 50 in mice is 1.7 ml/kg that’s a big dose so it seems to me you could use it in treatments in small doses

                10

              • #
                Environment Skeptic

                From: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nue3zmEc9-s
                “Coronavirus Update with Kiran Krishnan, Virology and Molecular Medicine Scientist”
                •Mar 31, 2020

                “Join Dr. Tyna on the Pain-Free & Strong Podcast as she sits down with Kiran Krishnan, virology and “molecular medicine expert & CSO of Microbiome Labs, to discuss how this virus works, how it binds, the “ACE2 receptor, “and why those with chronic inflammation may be at higher risk.

                “You don’t want to miss this one! You won’t hear this anywhere else, and it will truly blow your mind!
                “Category
                “Science & Technology”

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          • #

            A very short list of effective treatments of any sort of disease with these “CRISPR, monoclonal antibodies, stem cells, RNAi”. Even shorter for virus treatment.

            Anti-virals hopefully. I notice a lot of comments along the lines of “no one is mentioning… antivirals”. I wonder why the blind spot? Maybe my twitter feed is unusual being full of such things.

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          • #
            PeterS

            Zero viruses even after say 10 years? Hmmm.

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          • #
            Mal

            Vitamin d is essential to produce t cells for our immune system
            We get vitamins from the sun
            In winter is when the sun is at its weakest, many people are indoors and we shallow breathe which allows co2 build up in bottom of our lungs
            This builds up toxicity
            Deep breathing every hour for a few minutes together with vitamin D tablets may go a long way to boost the immune system

            41

          • #
            ian hilliar

            And we STILL dont have a vaccine for the flu that actually works!!!!!!

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          • #
            Environment Skeptic

            jo what you are describing sounds a lot like a biological bubble with a specific attribute being that it is like a soap bubble that lasts a long time only in a quiet medium.

            31

          • #
            Doc

            ‘We have….’. Actually Jo, we don’t. We have the possibilities of many, many
            therapeutic devices, no doubt. However, what everybody is learning from
            ‘definite treatments’ like HCQ and vaccines, the fact we have many fields of
            scientific possibilities, we are currently dependent on ancient, crowd. control
            methodology. As I said previously, having promising vaccines, antibodies
            and antiviral etc is one thing to be optimistic about. Current proof of
            safety and effectivity are repeatedly missing and reason for pessimism -
            or is that, balance – at least in the short term.

            10

      • #
        TedM

        “Are we going to attribute every death over the winter period to the covoid virus” ?

        Mal this is nonsense talk and doesn’t really contribute to the discussion.

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  • #
    Sunni Bakchat

    “It could be that people who are getting heart attacks and strokes for other reasons are afraid to go to hospital out of fear of catching Coronavirus.”

    A major potential problem with the authoritarian approach adopted in response to Covid-19 in Australia is the modified behaviour it induces. Perverse disincentives usually surface in these situations. Call it Human Nature coming to the fore. Where people are potentially deprived of their liberty for disclosing an illness, many will choose not to come forward.

    “Quiet Australians” might be as quiet as possible to get the official virus numbers down, achieve herd immunity and regain their freedom. Anything to get a stinking authoritarian elitist bureaucracy of their back i’d suggest.

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    • #

      Sunni, with known infections currently 6k, even if we assume asymptomatic = x 3 that still leaves us with only 0.7% of the population protected.

      We are about 19 million infections short of herd immunity.

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      • #
        Sceptical Sam

        That assumes that immunity to this virus even exists.

        I’m yet to see any evidence of that in the publications.

        71

      • #
        bobl

        We need more immunity, so Jo how do we get there.

        Analogies abound to global warming, this is a modelled disaster. We are not backing off as the models fail, doctors are not taking elderly patients off ARBs and putting them on beta blockers or calcium channel blockers because of ACE 2 upregulation. We are not taking advantage of our unique geography and doing lockdown by region. We are NOT protecting the vulnerable: No banning of ARBs and ACE-I drugs, No free safe delivery, no cheap heating, no air filters, no masks supplied to the vulnerable. There is no evacuation of vulnerable people from the infection pool in any plan nor us there a plan for evacuation of infected people from vulnerable people.

        Do all this properly and the sting in the tail is gone.

        51

        • #
          ian hilliar

          BOBL, I dont think there is any real evidence for stopping ACE inhibs or ARBs. None of my cardiologist friends have mentioned this, at all!

          32

        • #
          Winston

          Bobl,

          It is actually more likely that ACEIs and ARBs would be theoretically beneficial in the vasoconstriction crisis making ACE2 more available. A preliminary observational study showed that hypertension was an independent risk factor, and those on ACEIs and ARBs had a lower mortality than those on CCBs and BBlockers. (13% vs 28% mortality)*

          *(Sorry, I can’t find the link now to share it).

          Even though this data was very preliminary, and there is theoretical concerns either way, switching AWAY seems unwise currently, and possibly switching TO ARBs and/or ACEs may turn out to be a better idea. My advice would be to stay on exactly what you are on until definitive data comes to the fore.

          22

      • #

        if our asymptomatic cases were x3 the only way we wouldn’t be seeing mysterious unlinked cases popping up all over the place is if they are not shedding viruses or are leading to more asymptomatic cases. The shutdown is not good enough to stop such transmission being detected.

        51

        • #
          Peter C

          I think I see what you mean Gee Aye.

          The current shutdown does seem to be good enough to greatly limit transmission. It does seem that we are not seeing unlinked cases popping up all over the place, ergo either the asymptomatic cases are not 3x the sick ones, or the asymptomatic cases are not very infectious or both.

          30

      • #
        Sunni Bakchat

        Jo, I see asymptomatics as vastly higher than this and rising due to a number of factors. The virus will go largely underground and quietly work its way through the population. Human nature guarantees it. The idea of total control rather than just managing the outbreak is with all due respect, not simply folly but deleterious to Australian democracy.

        62

    • #
      JanEarth

      The CCP virus attacks the AE2 receptors…found in abundance in blood vessels. That is how Angiotensin II receptor blockers work in reducing BP.

      Why do you find it strange that the CCP virus can damage the blood vessels and cause strokes and or heart attacks ? Seem highly plausible to me. The Data also seems to be backing up my suspicions.

      00

      • #
        JanEarth

        My post #6.2 is wrong…please disregard it.

        Still getting the hang of my keyboard…I have only had it 5 years :)

        00

  • #
  • #
    dadgervais

    So: Heart Disease, Accidents, Stroke, and Alzheimers (4 of the top ten causes of death in the U.S.) can now be used to pad the statistics as possible China-19 deaths.

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  • #
    Scott

    I don’t think using CNN or any other US lame stream media for information is wise.

    They are the fake news and the propaganda arm of the Democrat Party.

    Nothing from them can be trusted.

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    • #
      Sceptical Sam

      Nor from their Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

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    • #
      markx

      “Fake news”.

      That is really a very deceptive phrase.

      Every news source in the world has a viewpoint. But we live in time when you can very easily make a point of reading around, of go to other sources, of checking scientific articles.
      It does us little good to simply label that we disagree with as fake.

      Just read and cross check a bit folks.

      01

  • #
  • #
    PeterS

    There’s too much scaremongering on this blog and it has become irritating. We need a balanced view and an exit strategy. There is much conflicting evidence so we need to keep an open mind until we have definitive evidence as to how serious the virus is given the differences in the patterns of deaths observed in nations with widely differing restrictions. Sweden is a case in point. At the moment it’s not clear, and anyone who says it’s clear is making the exact same mistake as the CAGW alarmists. I’m all in favour of the DIFFERENT approaches adopted by various nations to mitigate the spread of the virus since we didn’t know how serious it was at the time so we had no choice but to adopt the precautionary principle in general. We obviously still don’t know what the right level of restriction is since each country is doing their own thing, but what is done is done. We need to relax our restrictions either now or very soon depending on the country in question, in a controlled fashion to avoid the world falling into a depression that will only be much worse than the pandemic itself. I’m hoping it’s not already too late. Time will tell. Keeping our economies in a comma indefinitely is not the solution, it’s actually a death sentence. So, we need to talk about the exit strategy and not focus totally on the impacts of the virus. Sure, we must monitor the situation as we relax the restrictions in case things get out of control but without starting the relaxations now or very soon, we won’t know. The curve here and in some other nations has not only been flattened it has been smashed. We may never reach zero deaths and waiting for it to be zero is just plain dumb.

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    • #
      Reed Coray

      PeterS, I agree with you.

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      • #
        PeterS

        Thanks. I find it odd that so many here are so paranoid given how we have smashed the curve. Some it appears want to wait until there are zero deaths. Is anyone honestly going to believe we will ever reach that point in the next few months?

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        • #
          TdeF

          Yes. Call me dumb and paranoid but it is right on schedule and as predicted. And not zero deaths, that was never the metric. Zero infections. Get that for two weeks and you have no Wuhan Flu virus in your community, once everyone is out of hospital which will all come together in Mid May. Then you also have zero deaths.

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          • #
            TdeF

            And it will not come back, if we stop this and all other viruses at the airport and cruise terminal. We need to be as careful about human viruses as we are with cattle and dogs and cats and even grapes and seeds and wood and fruit fly. Johnny Depp could not bring his dogs in, but why was he allowed in? The Hendra virus in horses which nearly stopped the Melbourne Cup is another of the many Chinse bat derived viruses.

            As for business, we are ready to go. There is hardly a business, cafe, restaurant, shop which would not open immediately.

            And as a primary producer the only industry really affected long term is our new education industry for Chinese and Indians on which the massive University industry expansion has been based. Maybe this needed pruning anyway, as many of these ‘institutes’ may be little more than a profitable cover for mass immigration.

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            • #
              RickWill

              BHP recorded record iron ore sales first quarter 2020. The price was solid as well for the whole period. BHP forecast strong growth in China as their industry opens the throttle post CV19 idling period.

              My wife is predicting the lower end cafes and restaurants in Melbourne will need crowd control once the shackles are removed. A reward for parents and kids who have been well behaved during this sad episode.

              The reworking of Singapore’s TraceTogether app is still “weeks away” – indications are end of May. I expect that will be a prerequisite for removing all CV19 restrictions within Australian borders.

              72

              • #
                TdeF

                Agreed. I think though that some geographic restrictions will have to be in place for a month or two. Not onerous ones, but to limit any spread if a single infected parcel or person gets through. And that people should be able to keep working from home, if that is effective. Perhaps the big infections sources, music festivals, sports crowds, churches, mass events can wait for another month. Or go ahead with a lot of distancing or with a limit on the number of people. 10,000 spectators at the football, not 100,000. The infection business goes as the square of the number of people.

                As we go for a month without any infection, we can relax. Interstate flights, inter city travel. Fear will drop away, reasonably. I just hope it all translates to vigilance at the airports and terminals and tracking of all incoming visitors. And quarantine if there is any risk at all.

                91

        • #
          ian hilliar

          The curve is now so flat, it is lower than the birth rate. So it will always be with us.

          42

    • #
      Bill In Oz

      And the very best of luck to Sweden with it’s herd immunity program !
      For details of how Sweden is doing look here.
      https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/sweden/

      The weird thing is that this ‘strategy’ is the policy of a left wing progressive internationalist coalition
      After the 2019 elections.
      Which locked the more conservative Swedish political parties out of any major role.

      47

      • #
        PeterS

        Cherry picking never works for me. I need a more thorough study. I dearly like to know the stats for China, and I mean the real ones not the fake ones we have at hand. They have gone the other way with extreme lock down measures. So it will be interesting to know how many are really dying today. If their approach is what it takes to extinguish the virus, assuming it has done so, which of course is highly unlikely, then what you are suggesting is we should follow their approach. Good luck with that one. The truth of course is most likely in between these two extreme measures; Sweden and China. We are at that point already and we have managed to smash the curve. So, let get cracking and revive our economy gradually before it’s too late, assuming it’s not already too late.

        72

        • #
          Bill In Oz

          I have no time for the Communist Party of China.
          This Wuhan Virus pandemic has shown up in their true colours :
          An authoritarian One Party dictatorship with no scruples of morals
          When dealing with their own people of the rest of the world.
          The sooner this despotic mob are deposed
          The better for the Chinese people & the world.

          Meanwhile multiple examples are emerging of nations
          That are successfully eliminating this Foreign Wuhan Virus disease:
          Poland, Norway, South Korea, Taiwan, Australia & New Zealand.
          All these countries have democratically elected governments
          And all have implemented strategies which rely on the cooperation of the people.
          And which take into account the conditions on the ground in each country.

          127

          • #
            Bill In Oz

            I posted a criticism of the CCP China
            And got 4 red thumbs !
            How good’ to see the Pro CCP
            Trolls on this blog exposed !

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            • #
              Sceptical Sam

              It a metric on the political persuation of many of the recent influx of commenters.

              Never underestimate the capacity of your enemies to infiltrate and disseminate disinformation as part of their bigger picture.

              We’re seeing it here in spades.

              63

              • #
                Bill In Oz

                Yes I think you are right Sam

                33

              • #
                TdeF

                There is also a considerable amount of personal abuse, not discussion. That is typical of the left of politics. Always ad hominem attacks. Verballing. Putdowns. And an inability to read.

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              • #
                markx

                TdeF.
                I agree with everything you say above in relation to controlling the virus.

                Except this: “That is typical of the left of politics. Always ad hominem attacks. Verballing. Putdowns. And an inability to read.”

                That is, in fact, typical of the extreme on both sides of the political spectrum. You’d not see anything anywhere more ignorant than American religious extreme right wingers in their devotion to fighting wars or otherwise sacrificing their lives and livelihoods for the sake of their billionaire ‘owners’.

                22

            • #
              JanEarth

              Bill

              11 to 7 in your favour Bill. The CCP bots are slipping.

              20

    • #
      ivan

      I would like to see total death numbers for each nation for this year and the previous two years (April 2019 to 2020, April 2018 to 2019, April 2017 to 2018) just to see how that stacks up against the MSM Wu-flu inspired panic (don’t say it doesn’t happen, just think toilet paper).

      If we get those figures it should be the basis for rational discussion.

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      • #
        PeterS

        Rational discussion? Let’s do that after we’ve discussed and enacted an exit strategy. Otherwise, we will eventually be discussing a variety of other new crises.

        73

      • #
        Steve of Cornubia

        No conclusion, but relevant to your question:

        11

        • #
          • #
            Bill In Oz

            The number of sick & dead from the Wuhan Covid 19 disease in the UK
            Is a long story.
            The stats only take into account deaths in hospitals.
            But leave out deaths in care homes for the elderly
            And deaths at home.
            Very typical British obtuseness running rampant
            Even in a pandemic !

            A script for Monty Python I think.

            26

          • #
            RickWill

            Clearly UK was way to slow to act and has suffered the consequences. UK already had 335 deaths by the day the lockdown was implemented. That delay resulted in weekly death toll doubling in late March early April compared with seasonal flu, which occurs in the depths of winter.

            At time of lockdown the exponential increase was doubling every two days; the worst of all countries. If the lockdown was implemented on 9 March when there were just 5 deaths, the total death toll now would be under 200 instead of 17k. If it was delayed to just another 2 days to 25th then the death toll now would be 34k.
            https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/uk/
            Boris was simply too cavalier and indecisive. Western leadership grossly underestimated the quality of health care available in China and silly enough to trust offical information coming out of China.

            Taiwan closed its borders on 18th March after 1 death and 17 confirmed cases, which was beginning to take off. So far Taiwan has had 6 deaths.
            https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/taiwan/

            Anyone who thinks that decisive, early action has not saved tens of thousands of lives needs a few lessons in mathematics. Letting the virus run free would result in millions of deaths.

            The relevance of Taiwan to UK comparison is that Taipei has twice the population density of London.

            So well said RickWill. Thank you. — Jo

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            • #
              Bill In Oz

              Rick I think that Boris was still focussed
              On Brexit
              Getting it done was his promise.
              This Wuhan COVID 19 disease caught him unaware
              And by surprise.
              But getting ill himself
              Leda to a turnaround.
              A pity for all those who got very & for the dead.

              34

              • #
                RickWill

                No excuse – it was evident to countries close to China that something was amiss in early January. Thailand started arrival temperature checking on 3rd of January. China building a massive hospital in Wuhan in 2 weeks was a clear clue of how seriously China considered the risk.

                Cuomo in NY is the only western leader I have heard tell the truth about how he was caught out. A mixture of western arrogance and complete lack of understanding of China’s health care capacity – it is a clear possibility that they manufactured the virus as well. Then there was misplaced confidence in the WHO and China’s official figures. I recall a whole lot of commentary in western media analysing the Chinese official data saying it only killed the elderly and infirm. Meanwhile China imposes draconian lockdown on citizens living in Wuhan.

                Boris failed to see the bleeding obvious and was very late in taking effective action.

                Boris was still talking up herd immunity in mid March. A mistaken belief that his countrymen are a tough bunch. We will probably have to wait for his memoirs to get his reflection on his actions on CV19 and his survival of it. Time will tell if he has resulting complications from the virus or treatment.

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              • #
                JanEarth

                Bill
                The Poms were slack…they acted way too late and gave out very bad advice i.e. wait 7 days after being sick before going out. Latest news points to the actual death toll being 4 times what is being officially reported.

                Boris bragged about shaking hands…quite frankly he got what he deserved nothing less.

                10

            • #
              Sunni Bakchat

              Rickwill, Putting aside the hospital overload factor, which is real and contributes to increased mortality rates; have you considered the temporal nature of the death rate? The Swedes, notwithstanding some of the groupthink on this blog, have factored temporality into their calculations. The thinking being that shorter term herd immunity (without hospital overload) is a better or equal long run outcome for their society. Nobody real knows how many will die in either scenario. The immediate, clear and present danger to Australian society is however very obvious.

              21

              • #
                JanEarth

                Sunni

                there is overwhelming consensus amongst economists that we are in the beginnings of the worst recession ever…many times worse than 2008.

                There is a growing consensus that we are heading into GD2. Whatever scenario Sweden will not escape the economic pain. But they could have saved 1000+ lives at this point in time… but hell they are only old people so who gives a damn hey Sunni.

                20

              • #
                Sunni Bakchat

                JanEarth,

                Please don’t suggest I don’t care about old people. Many family members and friends are old. Many of my employees and associates are old, and have elderly parents. It’s just too easy to get onto a blog and make these sorts of throwaway remarks.

                Whether there’ll be a recession/depression or not is unknown. I invest for a living and see many different perspectives. Its looking ever more likely though. A recession did not need to occur now. A depression also does not need to occur. Lets hope its not too bad if it does come. My existence won’t be affected either way and i’m not particularly biased, as i saved for a rainy day and didn’t borrow. If you’re saying the recession was coming anyway so let’s discount the economic factor in this grand argument on what is the best path forward, i think that’s wrong.

                I am asking you to focus on the temporal nature of these matters. Yes a thousand lives might have been saved now, but would they have been saved in the long run with a better short run outcome?

                There’s strong evidence to suggest Sweden’s economic downturn has not been as severe. However i’d rather measure in broader and longer economic terms that includes a measure of standard of living. These choices are not easy. Appeal to emotion without underlying strong logic is not helpful when trying to examine the issues thoughtfully.

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            • #
              Lucky

              Post #11.3.2.1.2 by RickWill

              Did Taiwan have 1) strict border closing, or,
              did Taiwan impose 2) a shutdown of their economy ?

              ‘Decisive early action’ is important,
              seems a fair statement.
              but should it be 1) or 2) or both?

              20

              • #
                Bill In Oz

                Taiwan banned all entries from China
                Except for it’s own citizens.
                So the borders were closed very, very early.
                All entrants were temp measured for fever
                And checked for other symptoms.
                On the odd occasions when Wuhan Covid 19
                The infected persons were placed in quarantine
                And districts of Taipei were locked down.
                Masks were compulsory outdoors.

                But because they acted early
                They stopped it entering in a big way

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              • #
                Lucky

                Bill In Oz #11.3.2.1.1 Thanks for that info.
                ( No reply button!)

                So, it is fair to say that Taiwan’s good results (so far) are from:

                - Prompt and tight border control.
                - Those who entered were tested and monitored and isolated if necessary.
                - Compulsory outdoor mask wearing.
                - Lock-down, not universal but only selected districts.

                Lessons for us:
                Ignore WHO
                Lock-down but considered.

                20

              • #
                JanEarth

                Lucky

                Taiwan was preparing for this since 2002 spending billions so they did not get caught a second time. I have outlined in previous posts how this did this, suffice to say they were brilliant in their planning and it worked a treat. South Korea also and Singapore as well but none as comprehensive as the Taiwanese… but then they know the CCP better than anyone else.

                While it is important for us to plot our way out of this we also need to be planning carefully for a future pandemic so we never get caught like this again. These pandemics are coming around about 5 years apart now so we do need to be prepared.

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            • #
              sophocles

              But Rickwill:

              I shouldn’t need to remind y’all: there are none so blind as those who will not see.

              We all have our pecadillos, our blind spots, our pet beliefs and, of course, our pet epithets for those who don’t/won’t share/know our own bits of knowledge.

              That delay resulted in weekly death toll doubling in late March early April compared with seasonal flu, which occurs in the depths of winter.

              Rickwill: What makes you think it’s not the depths of Winter for the UK? That is the peak of their CC&F season – late winter into early spring. So it was right on time to catch the UK with its pants off and reap maximum deaths. As usual.

              Ours is yet to come: late August – early September.
              If you think it occurs in the middle of winter — July Down Under — then you are not prepared.

              Are you ready for it?

              Got your Vitamin D up?
              (Sabetta et al 2010
              Serum 25-Hydroxyvitamin D and the Incidence of Acute Viral Respiratory Tract Infections in Healthy Adults
              https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2885414/
              )

              You should have started lifting them three or four weeks ago. Boosting your immunity to bugs like Sars-covir-2 (covid-19) takes time. As you supplement and your levels rise, your body remits the influx to the most seriously needed places/problems first. The secret lies in the longer term blood levels, not the size of the daily supplement.

              see: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3805175/
              [2013] “Vitamin D3 Supplementation and Upper Respiratory Tract Infections in a Randomized, Controlled Trial”
              , Li-Ng et al.

              In another few weeks, it will be too late to reap much benefit from it.

              20

    • #
      WXcycles

      Peter, you could likewise justifiably be accused you’re hyperventilating and promoting imaginary economic collapse fears to frighten people in to rash decisions.

      i.e. if you want a balance, then stop taking one side. ;-)

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      • #
        PeterS

        You are so blind. We are suffering the worst economic hit since the Great Depression and you are questioning how serious it is? Give us a break.

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        • #
          NigelW

          We are suffering the worst economic hit since the Great Depression

          Are we??

          Anecdotally, I am flat out with work, and have been since Christmas. YMMV, of course…

          And don’t forget, the flood of Keynesian “funny money” will set everything straight again /sarc

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          • #
            Kalm Keith

            Hi Nigel, the thing I’ve found most difficult to understand is the “I’m alright Jack” approach.

            At the moment I am alright, but in another month, who knows.

            Try to imagine the fear and pain behind every shopfront that has a sign saying, To Let.

            True, some signs might say Temporarily Closed,,, Reopening Soon: but mostly it’s finished.

            The fact that some people on this blog can just skip past the plight of those small business owners is amazing.

            KK

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            • #
              WXcycles

              You are just as unrealistic and reactive, Keith. Hard times are normal for businesses within countries that have belt-tightening during regular downturns. What is very abnormal is a lack of recession and so much support and stimulus spending at all levels.

              Being soft and unprepared applies to business as well, not just to workers. You complain about business but not about workers? No because the workers are being supported and so are the businesses.

              A lesson I sure learned the hard way was to no prepare for recession and multi-month downturns, when businesses are structured properly and sustainably they can grow and shrink as required by the economic and local conditions (including weather disruptions), plus the own built a buffer of cash to winter-over a bad economy. This is normal. Not doing that is the pre-failure condition.

              The other is the psychology of the business owner, a business failure in life is normal, and having to reopen a failed business is also normal. What is not normal is running a business on debt is not normal and it is not sustainable, it is called a weak hand, and weak hand get discovered in a crisis and go under. Don’t allow liabilities to exceed assets you can liquidate and liabilities you can drop to keep afloat.

              Businesses have a responsibility to do that and business owners have a responsibility to themselves to keep their head and liabilities straight, and prepare to re-open.

              Seriously, you guys seem to live in a fantasy if you think business can be saved in an emergency because you want them to be. In business it’s the responsibility of the owner and manager to make that happen, not anyone else, and it’s on them to get up an going again in a re-opening.

              And they will.

              And they are getting massive support right now, so cut back on the hand-wringing, whining and excessive virtue-signalling BS, as it’s not an argument for do anything, Keith.

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    • #

      PeterS — we have many readers here who are not in Australia. Don’t you think it is unfair not to discuss the main issue the rest of the world has to deal with. And this topic will transform global geostrategic, political landscapes. These are historic events medically, politically, economically. Do you not find it fascinating?

      I would prefer to discuss which lockdown type of actions were the most useful for the exit, but some people still seem to think letting this virus run free comes at little cost. So understanding the ways this virus harms us in the first place appears to be imperative. Since this is a science blog and I have medical science training, it seems my greatest contribution to wealth and health is to help people understand whether this is a serious medical threat. And many people without medical training seem to be struggling.

      How much should we spend to get rid of it — depends on how bad it is. If it takes life prematurely, and leaves people permanently damaged (as strokes and heart attacks often do) that justifies more effort to remove it.

      And since this is a medical driven economic problem, I don’t see how we solve the economy without solving the medical issue first and fast.

      As it happens, my predictions were correct over and over and would have saved almost all the economic damage.

      Those which aimed for Herd Immunity have killed tens of thousands. See the UK.

      I’ve yet to see one argument that suggests that releasing isolation before we extinguish the virus would be a better or richer life while we suffer through repeat rounds of lockdown, death and disease?

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      • #
        PeterS

        Again you are trying to have it both ways. Either we continue with the current harsh lock downs until the virus is eliminated as some are saying or we start relaxing them in a controlled fashion to avoid a depression as others are saying. I’m in the latter group. Which groups are you in?

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        • #

          not trying to have it both ways.

          In countries that can do extinction, we need to aim for zero, then start releasing the lock. I expected we would have a more advanced discussion of how to know we are at zero, instead I seem to keep answering the same questions. (Yes we can do extinction to zero, No we won’t isolate forever, No we don’t have to have a vaccine. Yes we need strict borders. No that’s not forever, just til we get a treatment. rinse repeat, yawn). So getting out of lockdown in an “extinction” situation has a different schedule. Again it just depends on how well we can estimate whether there is one asymptomatic case left in the country.

          In nations which can’t get to zero (because they are not wealthy enough, or the weather and pop density make the price too high) then they can only release a little and wait two weeks or four weeks. And for them it makes sense to perhaps release some businesses (which ones?) at least for another month or two til summer comes and the cost of getting rid of it is less. This won’t be much of a panacea — people won’t feel like spending if the virus is still around. They won’t feel like heading off for shopping therapy. Lots of the 60+ will stay home. Not instant joy for business in the non-zero nations.

          Then there is the question of strains. If Europe/US got a nastier strain (more deadly or more transmissible than Australia-NZ) the cost benefit changes. I suspect there is no nice way to live with this virus. Reading the stories of war like pain the doctors and paramedics are going through I don’t think they will put up with it. I don’t think teachers want to either.

          Once some democracies see some countries living free of it, others will want that.

          20

      • #
        PeterS

        Well, will you please at least answer my question? I just like to know where you stand so we can avoid talking at cross purposes.

        45

      • #
        Environment Skeptic

        Absolute pure speculation Jo to such an extent that you seem to disqualify those who actually are qualified when it suits you, as though you are an expert witness of some kind.

        Many readers here, are not qualified including myself and so i am always on the lookout for expert opinion, not journalism.

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        • #
          Environment Skeptic

          For example, the main content of your post is about brain damage etc caused by the virus..

          On closer inspection, if my sources are correct, it would seem it is the cytokine storm (Human immune reaction) that is turning on the organs and so forth that is the cause and not the virus. The virus by itself does not do this in my non expert opinion and only as a student. The symptoms of cytokine storm, brain injury etc, loss of smell and so on are similar in many diseases.

          The corona is no star or exceptional with respect to triggering severe cytokine storms. Again, i must add that this is in my non expert opinion.

          In my non expert opinion you recent post Jo does not mention this or am i mistaken. Is this detail or area of study mentioned?

          I think it is a good question and might as well add it on my list of ‘things i need to look into’ and hope you and others here do too.

          From: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.3109/02699052.2016.1163618?src=recsys&

          “Introduction

          It is increasingly recognized that an aberrant immune system and a massive over-production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, a ‘cytokine storm’, is a major factor in the disease progression and the mortality from numerous diseases. Cytokine storm, also known as ‘cytokine release syndrome’, can occur after infection with malaria [1], severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) [2], dengue [3], leptospirosis [4], Lassa fever [5], gram-negative sepsis [6], as well as with numerous other infectious diseases [7–10]. Cytokine storm is a major cause of death in patients with Ebola [11–13]. Patients with cytokine storm may experience increased vascular permeability, severe haemorrhage and multi-organ failure, which may ultimately be the cause of a fatal outcome [8,13,14]. Marked increases in systemic cytokine levels, of both pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines, are seen. It is thought that this over-production of cytokines by healthy immune systems is the explanation for why individuals from 20–40 were more likely to die than the elderly during the 1918 H1N1 pandemic [15,16]. Cytokine storm can occur after severe burns or trauma [17], with acute pancreatitis [18] or with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) secondary to drug use or inhalation of toxins [19]. Severe acute graft vs host disease can be considered a cytokine storm [20,21]. Cytokine storm is also a recognized complication of treatment with the commonly-used antineoplastic agent rituximab [22], as well as of treatment with the monoclonal antibodies, tositumomab, alemtuzumab, muromonab and blinatumomab [23]. Elevated levels of cytokines are found and are thought to be an important cause of the pathology in many neurologic conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease [24], Parkinson’s disease [25], autism [26] and multiple sclerosis[27], as well as in the acute phase of Guillain-Barre syndrome[28,29]. Increased cytokine levels have been linked to exacerbations of psychiatric illnesses [30,31] and of lupus encephalopathy[32,33].” …..

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      • #
        Sunni Bakchat

        Jo, stating “I’ve yet to see one argument that suggests that releasing isolation before we extinguish the virus would be a better or richer life while we suffer through repeat rounds of lockdown, death and disease?” is an egregious False Dilemma fallacy that could reasonably said to engender fear and anger. The falsely dichotomous nature of the argument – lockdown or no lockdown is a self-limiting dead end that will lead to a chaotic outcome if care is not taken.

        Why would masks not be seen to act as a replacement for lockdown, thereby liberating citizens? They work for doctors and nurses do they not? Are you suggesting the current lockdown rules are airtight insofar as contagion is concerned? Absolute in their efficacy?

        Why would a risk mitigation framework not be publicised and adopted? Some places are riskier for viral spread than others are they not? Is human nature to be publicly factored into epidemiological propositions?

        Why would high reliability testing at Australia’s entry points not be suitable? Why did Australia not quarantine for Ebola, SARS or MERS? Would it be ok for one in a thousand to achieve a false negative on a Covid-19 test coming into Australia? One in ten thousand? Where’s the limit on the absolutism?

        Does viral load play a part in the mortality rate? Streeck in his report on Gangelt referred to viral load reduction from protective measures playing a part in decreasing the longer term effect of the virus. Where’s the balanced discussion on this?

        Pervasive absolutism fails the relevant logical tests in the circumstances. I can only assume you must think the virus will be eradicated shortly to take the position you do. The odds of that happening are very slim when all of the facts are weighed. If it is eradicated, great! In the meantime, perhaps its worth giving further deep consideration to the suffering such an ideological position involves as a trade off to other less absolute outcomes.

        53

        • #

          Not absolutist. No false dilemma. Perhaps you are unaware Australia’s total new caseload in the last 24 hours was 12 new cases? Headed for zero.

          It’s a different discussion overseas (apart from NZ, Greenland, and Taiwan). For us the choice at the moment looks like :

          a/ a few more weeks of lockdown = Freedom from coronavirus (but with strict borders and a two week quarantine). Then unleash the economy.

          or b/ Reduce lockdowns now, gain a bit of income, but risk repeat outbreaks and repeat, local lockdowns and Chaos.

          Otherwise I presume you are replying to someone else as you know I’m a fan of masks and you also know there are no reliable tests for coronavirus in the asymptomatic incubation period and none will be available in the next few weeks.

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          • #
            Sunni Bakchat

            Jo, I suppose one might say, it’s entirely possible to have two reasonable points of view that differ.

            52

        • #
          markx

          Geez, settle down lads, it is all a work in progress. And it has had a pretty good outcome so far.

          All the critics are stating the obvious, “We have to open up again some day”.
          I’m not sure why that has to be said, and combined with criticisms of the current isolation regimes, it’s perhap to enable later claims of ‘genius after the event status’ for being cleverer than everyone else.

          Yes, and we will, with a lot more knowledge, testing and tracking, be able to open the economy up again. There will be miss-steps in the process, but with everything in place, these will be dealt with.

          21

      • #
        Kalm Keith

        Hi Jo,

        Bobl made a good case for true isolation.

        Sadly the current setup appears to be Political Isolation where people are jammed in homes together.

        I’ve just come from reading a heart rending comment from a New York doctor describing the situation there.
        In the middle of it he lets slip the fact that some of the figures he is quoting are from a Chinese paper that analyses the Wuhan tragedy.

        What many people on this blog are jaded by is the poor or partisan attention to detail by government authorities and politicians whose job it is to guide us through this mess.

        There’s a tendency to media distrust at the moment and we in Australia are lucky to be able to look into the United States from the outside and see the goings on in their politics and media.

        Questions even exist as to why there’s no flu this year: but we have CV19 only?

        Certainly CV19 is real and deadly, but there’s that nagging feeling that maybe some of the flu has been classified as the more financially rewarding (USA) CV19.

        Nobody denies the need to isolate those infected with CV19, but surely in Australia this could be done in such a way as to allow optimal outcomes.

        Too many questions.

        KK

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    • #
      bobl

      I agree, as I’ve constantly pointed out there are ways to manage this infection such that the economy keeps going and with far less panic.

      You MUST evacuate positives until they are better, not send them home to infect the family and probably the next door neighbours too. Shelter in place is a hopeless strategy because you have to shutdown the economy and panic everyone to do it. Even then microdroplet transmission ensures it won’t work in cold weather. Look at fog, how long can droplets hang around on a foggy morning? In cities that fog is going to be toxic.

      Simply put you do your level best to keep as many areas free of virus. When you can’t, move the vulnerable from there to a safe place, lockdown the area until you can… not the whole f-n country.

      One C130 visit to each major town a day could move all infection to one place of isolation.

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    • #
      TedM

      You seem to be able to express your view on this thread PeterS along with others that follow your line of thinking. This shouldn’t be a competition or an attempt to debunk but to compare ideas and information, which at present that is what it is, at least primarily.

      Some comments are not well expressed, and my comments are not exempt. Sometimes we don’t read others comments in context, and once again I’m not exempt. However those things aside there are a diversity of views expressed on this blog, and allowed to be expressed.

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      • #
        Kalm Keith

        Ted, I appreciate your moderate comment but I’ve just come up from reading people describing Peter as a troll. Really?

        Have a look at Bob’s sensible comment and explain what’s wrong?

        This shutdown in its present poorly implemented form, will cause much human pain and suffering.

        That’s all that Peter is saying.

        KK

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  • #
    Bill In Oz

    E.M.Smith On Musings ith Chiefio blog writes :

    “For the folks who die, life expectancy is zero.

    For those who suffer through a bad case, 20%, the damage can persist for the rest of their lives. Brain damage, sterility, poor lung function limiting mobility, amputation, damaged heart muscle, kidney damage and dialysis, and much more.

    Belittling this disease is a mistake.”

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    • #
      PeterS

      Also exaggerating the disease is also a mistake. The best approach is somewhere in between the two extremes. which you and a few others here refuse to accept is the most common sense, safest and logical approach.

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      • #
        TdeF

        And if you are wrong? Who pays?

        Boris Johnson was wrong and he nearly died. The Nederlands were wrong. Sweden is wrong. And they are all paying a heavy price.

        Australia was right.

        There is no middle ground, no compromise and isolation works and works quickly.

        The real problem these countries have is that they are manufacturing countries and cannot isolate and continue. We can and have and it has worked. We are the envy of the world and you think we should go for some sort of fantasy middle ground? We don’t have factories with mass assembly.

        Each country has to solve its own problems its own way. Our Iron ore and coal exports are hitting records, especially as the prices are set in $US and our currency has collapsed. Of course the Greens and the Climate Change people will be hating this. And the oil price has collapsed, so less of our cash will be going overseas. And a million Australians a month are staying home and spending at home.

        We will be back on deck on the first day.

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        • #
          PeterS

          So you are suggesting we keep the restrictions indefinitely? Get real mate. Our economy is in a comma and is on its last breadth. If you can’t see it then you surely have your head in the sand. The curve has been smashed. What more do you want? Eliminate all viruses as well as COVID-19? Listen to yourself. You are so paranoid.

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          • #
            TdeF

            So everyone is paranoid except you? Think about it.

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          • #
            TdeF

            “So you are suggesting we keep the restrictions indefinitely?” Where did I say that?

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            • #
              PeterS

              That was your implication since all I am saying is we start to relax the restrictions soon rather than allowing them to continue indefinitely as is the case now. You follow?

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              • #
                WXcycles

                Are you not paying attention Peter? Do you plan to just keep whining like a turbine from here?

                The Scomo Govt said on the 16th of April that it was looking to reopen in 28 days time, i.e. …

                MAY 15th 2020 re-opening

                And the COVID-19 data we have suggests that would be a good time to do so.

                They’re not going to do it any sooner just because you keep whining louder and louder, and scare-mongering about economic “Apocalypse Now”.

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              • #
                PeterS

                Don’t tell me. Tell those who want to maintain the lock downs until the virus is eliminated. I’ve made it abundantly clear many times I want a controlled approach to the relaxation. Now you and others are slowly coming to my way of thinking. Oh gosh! How embarrassing.

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              • #
                Environment Skeptic

                I want a controlled approach to the relaxation too. Thank you Peter for being so patient. Cheers!

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              • #
                PeterS

                You’re welcome Environment Skeptic. I’m a very patient person by nature.

                42

              • #
                markx

                Well.

                Ain’t that a stroke of effing genius.

                “… a controlled approach to re-opening is needed…”

                Geez. Who da thunk? We are surely beset by geniuses on all sides.

                11

          • #
            Serp

            A comma heading towards a semi colon and then a full stop…

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          • #
            TdeF

            And the word is coma, not comma. That’s three times you have mispelled it. The economy is not in a comma.

            And the only two industries in real trouble are airlines and tertiary education. 65% of Australians work in small business and they will all start in weeks. In fact many are already back at work. Small businesses have social distancing in their jobs anyway. And if you are dealing with the public, disposable gloves are cheap enough.

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            • #
              PeterS

              Sorry, I’m not good at spelling. I presume though most people get the message. As for the economy, well sorry I can’t help you there if you don’t see how serious it is. We might have to learn the hard way. Keep the restrictions on until the virus is eliminated and see how we go. And please don’t tell me no one has suggested that. Of course they have. Memories holes don’t belong here.

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          • #
            JanEarth

            Peter S

            An exit strategy has been outlined by AusGov… 2 weeks no new cases then gradual relaxation. That 2 weeks may even be modified if we can get 7 days of no new cases.

            its still early days in this.

            10

        • #
          RickWill

          Australia was right.

          The only country that got it right was Taiwan. Acted fast, decisively and effectively with very little resulting economic impact. Closed borders when death toll was ONE and began automatic contact tracing:
          https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/taiwan/
          Total toll so far SIX.

          Thailand was one of the first to implement arrival screening on 3rd January. Almost two months before they recorded their first death. They had a plan. Now 48 deaths but they have not yet quite crushed the virus:
          https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/thailand/

          Australia waited till there were 7 deaths before the lockdown was implemented:
          https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/australia/
          Death toll now 74. There were some incompetent leaks in the controls as well. Business has been significantly impacted and a great deal of anxiety created. Australia let the genie out and it has cost significantly in financial terms and some unrest to get it back in.

          Taiwan had a plan. Australia has meandered its way through with generally good leadership but no plan. The contact tracing app is reportedly still 5 weeks away. If that is to be the main item in the arsenal during the recovery phase then it should be already available for people to access and test.

          As far as I can see no one in leadership in Australia recognised that the virus could be crushed, deprived of hosts, until a week or so ago.

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          • #
            TdeF

            Actually the countries which got it right were all those who did not trust China after Asian flu, bird flu, swine flu, MERS and SARS and Hendra. They were South Korea, Taiwan(not a country according to WHO) and Hong Kong (Technically not a country now). They all acted quickly and had their plans in place. Everyone else had to improvise.

            Singapore and Japan did well at the start but they have been experimenting with partial shutdown, which is putting them back on an exponential curve. A straight line on a log curve is a hockey stick on a linear graph.

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        • #
          WXcycles

          … and our currency has collapsed.

          Actually the AUD/USD has been coming back up steadily, most likely due to how well we’ve coped with CHICOM-19 and our relative market stability during the period, plus the fact our largest industries are still operating and making a profit, and we’re about 3 weeks from significant economic re-opening, normalizing into June.

          So AUD is likely to keep gaining and market to rise, so it’s lucky for us oil is bottoming.

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        • #
          TedM

          Not sure why you got 4 red thumbs TdeF. A pretty good summary to my way of thinking.

          How many red thumbs will this comment attract?

          61

          • #
            TdeF

            This is a discussion forum. Some of the people are really good and their conversation is very interesting. However it attracts repetitive trolls like PeterS. He has form. And at least two of these irrational people are going through red thumbing everything. I do not care about anyone’s spelling. What I care about is that he doesn’t read, so he is wasting everyone’s time.

            For myself, I cannot express how wonderful it is that this theory of total elimination works. There are always doubts with crazy articles from reputable people indicating that the spread of the virus can be 50x as much as we think, that there are vast numbers of carriers and that we are all doomed to live with this monstrosity forever. It takes a toll mentally.

            So three cheers for Australia, for all the sacrifice of just staying home, often not earning a living, just so we can quickly get away from living in fear and having tens of thousands of people dead, like most other countries.

            And the whole world will look at what we have done and they know what to do. No quarter. Isolate and eliminate. Destroy this virus and slam the doors shut on it. Bring back the individual countries, individual borders and the individual health checks. We do not want their borderless world. We want the safety of borders. The rest is customs and defence and what defence is there against atomic weapons anyway?

            Remember when you used to go to the airport and you went through Health and Immigration? We forgot. Now on the tenth major virus out of China, we have been forced to reinvent the wheel. Except that this time, we have the tools. A bit like Ghostbusters. Amazing. And about time!

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  • #
    Bill In Oz

    E.M.Smith On Musings With Chiefio blog writes :

    “For the folks who die, life expectancy is zero.

    For those who suffer through a bad case, 20%, the damage can persist for the rest of their lives. Brain damage, sterility, poor lung function limiting mobility, amputation, damaged heart muscle, kidney damage and dialysis, and much more.

    Belittling this disease is a mistake.”

    55

    • #
      MudCrab

      For the folks who die, life expectancy is zero.

      Sorry, I understand the intent of that sentence, but the wording is grammatically bollocks.

      Folks who die – pertaining to now.

      Expectancy – pertaining to the future.

      When you are dead you don’t expect anything. You are dead.

      32

  • #
    Robert Herron

    Sorry Jo but you have been too extreme on your forecasts from the beginning. The data and the models they produced have been rubbish and you should have known that. If you were going to predict what this virus might be like you need only have looked at the “family” it comes from.

    Finally we are getting some decent data.

    http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/phcommon/public/media/mediapubhpdetail.cfm?prid=2328

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Robert,
      Because people listened to Jo
      Here in Australia
      ( Admittedly a tad late )
      We here have only 6645 COVID infections
      And only 71 people dead as of this morning.
      And now we are close to eliminating this Foreign Chinese virus
      And getting our normal lives back.

      Unfortunately people in many other countries did not listen to Jo
      Or perhaps even know of her posts.
      They are living with the consequences of that
      Lack of knowledge or a deliberate ‘do not worry attitude’ now.

      I think that includes the USA
      Tho’ EM Smith & ( now departed ) Larry Ledwick on
      Musings from Chiefio
      Tried hard to warn Americans from late January.
      As of this morning here the USA has 817,187 people infected
      And 45229 Americans dead.

      So in conclusion
      I don’t think we here in Oz
      Need your advice or malinformation.
      Please sort out your own ‘home’ properly
      Before telling how folks in other countries should do it.

      98

      • #
        Peter Fitzroy

        Damn Straight Bill

        Jo has been consistent, and constant in her posts about this virus on this site.

        In fact, the amount of info provided, and the insights generated make this a very welcome resource in what seems to be partisan reporting on the mainstream.

        To Robert’s crack about models – Do you think he understands that they are scenarios?

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        • #
          RicDre

          A new word for model output?

          Predictions
          Projections
          Scenarios

          60

          • #
            Peter Fitzroy

            No Ric – It depends on the model, but Jo has already explained it, I suggest you read some of the previous posts.

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            • #

              Robert, I realize this is hard for people without medical training.

              That publichealth link is a gish gallop list of logical errors and cherry-picked single cases, and desk-top academics who mostly are not on the front line, and simply can’t admit the obvious — that lockdowns are followed by lower cases. I’ve debunked Streeck. Deaths have nearly doubled since Ionniddis did his hard to justify premature analysis of the Diamond Princess.

              Saying something is wrong because of the “family” it comes from is an ad hom. C’mon… You’re better than that. And I can only debunk one piece of junk at a time.

              I still need to post on the embarrassment that is Wittkowsky but See my comment on Wittkowski which was linked in the publichealth list.

              Sorry I haven’t posted that yet. But do you want me to explain why he’s wrong? I don’t think it will be welcomed?

              The people assembling that list don’t know much about public health. I could quote far more experts than they have ( I have already) but that would prove nothing. Just the pointless game of argument from authority.

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              • #
                Sunni Bakchat

                Jo, when did you debunk Streeck’s report? Are you referring to your post where you posited a number of questions in the absence of further data?

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              • #

                Sunni, read the post linked again. you must be thinking of another blog.

                Perhaps you can explain how a study can be redeemed when it wasn’t random, doesn’t represent the German population, is likely skewed to a younger group (both because they included more families, and also because the outbreak started as a carnival cluster).

                And that’s assuming their test wasn’t cross reactive with the common cold?

                Streeck study tells us that one town with a cluster outbreak in a young cohort may have a higher asymptomatic rate than the population which includes the high risk 60+ group. We already knew that.

                10

              • #
                Sunni Bakchat

                Jo, please see my response to your assertions here made on the day of the post- http://joannenova.com.au/2020/04/german-15-herd-immunity-study-wasnt-random-and-may-have-tested-for-the-common-cold/#comment-2311211

                Firstly the study has not been finalised. You asked for a German speaker to reference or find the full study in order to see the underlying data. You stated words to the effect the underlying data would be required for proper understanding of methods and samples. I translated and found the reference for you as requested. The only error was the type of test methodology used i.e. Serum not PCR; which you graciously corrected me on.

                The study followed WHO guidelines for testing. This was disclosed by the study authors. Why would that not be adequate? If there is to be criticism, should this not be directed to the WHO?

                You say “likely skewed to a younger group”. I attached a link to a guardian article that made it clear “350 adults” were involved at the carnival. Are you presuming German carnival culture is similar to Australia?

                You don’t know about cross reactivity because the final report is not released. But as i recall you stated later in the blog, their reported methodology appeared to support exclusion of cross reacted results.

                Streeck’s study does not tell us what you assert it does as the case you’ve built is based on biased assumption and misunderstanding.

                It looks more like supposition than debunking to my eyes.

                Furthermore, there are now numerous studies on closed populations that show very similar results to the Gangelt results.

                10

              • #

                So the study is not finalized and we can’t criticize it but we should accept it?
                Can’t have it both ways. Can’t quote this is a real result when we know it wasn’t random and you admit it’s not published.
                There are design flaws. Accepting whole households means a higher incidence of kids, and younger adults since they live in larger houses.

                Banal and obvious, and no demographic data was supplied. It has all the hallmarks of a study done to find a political conclusion.

                Re age group, I’m assuming that more 30 year olds went to the carnival than 80 year olds.

                Infection was weighted in younger half, tests were weighted in younger half. Study done on a cluster.

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              • #
                Sunni Bakchat

                jo, It’s a difficult question whether acceptance or rejection is warranted when these summaries are released. I would have thought it best to wait before suggesting Streeck’s debunked. Research is a long game. A bit of optimism is a provider of hope but then again we had the guy who drank aquarium cleaner.

                The point on the design flaws was that Steeck specifically mentioned that he’d adopted WHO guidelines for the sample. Should we be looking at whether the WHO has outdated sampling methodology; or was Streeck deliberateley gaming the WHO’s methodology to achieve a politically motivated outcome? My opinion is that Streeck probably was being a bit cute about it. That he probably knew the WHO’s sampling methodology was not best practise but likely weighed this against the criticism that might be received from adopting a more stringent non-standard “german” methodology. Pure supposition on my part though.

                The 30 v 80 year olds question – Carnival culture in Germany is quite unusual. It’s not like the Royal Easter Show in Oz. The Guardian reported a group that were said to be “350 adults”. They were at a carnival but in an adult group drinking, dining etc. The kids might have been on rides, but the adults were drinking in a discrete group judging by the reports. The carnival might better be described as consistent with german seasonal events like Tanzen in Mai and Oktoberfest.

                I think we’ll see the demographics in the near future. I’ll keep scanning the german press for the published study. It seems the study has informed the german response to the virus. Perhaps as you suggest that was its intention.

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              • #

                If Streeck and others can declare policy moves in the media with inadequate methodology and data I can declare them debunked.

                00

        • #
          Kalm Keith

          Highly, seriously functional.

          00

    • #
      Gary

      Totally agree Robert – too much cherry picking on this site. It’s becoming more alarmist than the climate change wackos. Instead of relying on sensationalist media monopolies, compromised WHO and self-appointed, unregulated ‘monitor’ known as Worldometer, why not look at a regularly-updated, site providing an alternative view such as https://swprs.org/a-swiss-doctor-on-covid-19/ ? Or any of the links or references on there.

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      • #
        PeterS

        And that’s the point. This site has become so paranoid it’s willing to sacrifice people’s lives due to one crisis (depression) to save lives of another crisis (virus) where common sense dictates there is a middle ground, and not many hear even want to consider it.

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        • #
          bobl

          Yes I agree, and as I am constantly saying there ARE ways of going about this that are cheaper, wouldn’t have trashed the economy, would have panicked people less, resulted in far less depression (cabin fever) and would have been more effective!

          It took half an hour of my elderly brain cells to work out a strategy to do better without the damage, yet 100000 public servants couldn’t work it out. Instead they just did what everyone else did ignoring our unique situation.

          For one our territory spans antarctic through tropical climates almost to the equator ( If you include our islands and Antarctic territory) That’s a unique situation and a big advantage for disease management have we used it? Nope.

          Jo, I plead with you rather that tacitly give support to the scaremongers please look at other minimal damage strategies and start pushing for an economically sustainable path. What we are doing is NOT sustainable in the long term. We are building windmills to stop the weather!

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        • #
          Sceptical Sam

          Give it a break PeterS.

          You need to commit yourself to registering the number of lives you’re prepared to sacrifice in order to avoid a recession (which Australia was headed towards long before Covid-19) or minimize its affects, to continue with that line of argument.

          Similarly, you need to show your analysis of the extent to which the economy will suffer if the virus were to take off here, as it has in the USA or Italy. As it would if there were no lock-down/social distancing/quarantine action taken.

          In the absence of that analysis you’re just another lobbyist, motivated by interests unknown to us here.

          There is no good outcome from either scenario. They’re both bad.

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          • #
            PeterS

            What you prefer the insane approach of maintaining our restrictions until the virus is eliminated? Make up your mind. Which is it? Relax our restrictions in a controlled manner as I suggested a very long time ago other threads as well as here, or keep them on until we eliminate the virus?

            56

            • #
              Sceptical Sam

              Eliminate the virus in Australia – as measured by the number of new infections.

              When new infections have consistently sat at zero, gradually open up the economy.

              53

          • #
            Kalm Keith

            Sam,

            As Jo would say;

            Sigh,

            there’s no problem with taking action, but taking action that kills the patient is not smart.

            I have no problem with “taking action” but the number of people here on this blog who are oblivious to the plight of the average person in this “shutdown” is frightening.

            Very few small businesses will survive a two month shutdown. The loss of Faith in society will be too much for many.

            KK

            KK

            31

            • #
              Environment Skeptic

              Thank you Kalm Keith. The lack of empathy is truly horrifying. Heartless really.

              41

            • #
              Sceptical Sam

              KK,

              Australia was to get a recession irrespective of Covid-19. All businesses suffer during a recession – be they big businesses or small.

              PeterS cannot slide away from the fact that his approach will kill people. More people than the approach adopted by the National Cabinet and the PM. How many is he prepared to have die?

              He fails to understand (or accept) that doing nothing from a lock-down perspective also has large economic costs. People die. Businesses suffer. Productivity falls. Investment dries up. People become sick. Unemployed. Consumers hunker down and take precautions of their own volition.

              Like so many others he seems to think that there are few economic costs to what he proposes. He’s wrong. And, if he did some analysis he’d demonstrate to himself that he is wrong.

              34

    • #

      Robert, Gary, Peter

      Quote me. My predictions and recommendations Feb 9 and Feb 14, March 21 were spot on.

      Feb 9th:

      If I were ruler of the world I’d be closing borders and sitting tight for a few weeks. We’ll know so much more then. The cost of quarantine is enormous, but the cost of getting this wrong will be counted in “millions” — and that’s not dollars. If we wait to find out how serious this is, it could be too late to stop it….After a few weeks, borders can be opened again on a case by case basis with “clean nations”. This means people can confidently organize tours, conferences, holidays and weddings without fear of them being cancelled at short notice. A mandatory two week quarantine would be essential with nations that had outbreaks.

      Jo Nova Feb 14th:

      While quarantine is very expensive, if these numbers are correct and the virus is easily spread with many low grade infections it is still probably cheaper to limit and contain now,> rather than have to close schools and factories in a months time.”

      When did the world lock down: one month later.

      I said lockdown would work and then showed it does: 12 days after lockdowns, quarantines and isolation, Coronavirus slows

      I said the long lockdowns were unnecessary and awful. That this would be faster and shorter than people think. And that if people did what I suggested we would restart the economy soonest.

      I use no models, just text book science and arithmetic and an understanding of Virology.

      I’ve been working to minimize the economic damage. At no cost to you I was right when the well paid big government academics missed the threat, reacted too late, but ended up doing what I said they’d have to do, since they stupidly, negligently and incompetently missed the best option.

      Is it perhaps a tad churlish and ungrateful to call that success paranoid n’est pas?

      What am I afraid of? Big government incompetence.

      Gary, what’s the definition of cherry picking? Is that where I report the news that contradicts me and explain why it’s wrong? ;- ) C’mon.

      I know you guys are p$#%#d at the virus. But don’t shoot the messenger who’s helped you eh?

      Please, I’m all ears if there is something I’ve got wrong. But bring your evidence and arguments to the party OK?

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      • #
        bobl

        Jo, but how about you looking VERY critically at HOW the government is crushing the curve and look for better ways to achieve that.

        I’m not so much p***d at the virus as I am at the government for the AVOIDABLE collateral damage they have done! By all means let’s have quarantine but let’s do it without collapsing the nation.

        We are really not protecting the vulnerable and we are not even quarantining.

        72

        • #
          Peter Fitzroy

          bobl, did you not understand – Jo has already outlined just what you asked, re the curve

          As to the avoidable collateral damage – I would put it to you that putting health first is the response of grown up society. Did you not read about the billions in stimulus and support provided so far. so where is that damage?

          Finally – borders are closed, internal travel is discouraged, stay at home is being enforced. Our low and now dropping rates are testament to our protection of everyone, including the vulnerable, which again is what a grown up society does.

          Jo should be getting bouquets not brickbats, she understands the science, and has been ahead of the curve in advocating a science backed response.

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    • #
      TedM

      Why would you expect the result that the models predicted, when they were predicting what would happen in the absence of lock down, and based on what had been observed to that point in time in the NH.

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  • #
    • #
      PeterS

      I thought you said you had no time for the CPC?! :-)

      43

      • #
        Bill In Oz

        Peter I have come to the conclusion
        That you are a pro CCP troll.
        Not Australian.
        Not even an American
        Or Brit.

        39

    • #
      Kalm Keith

      Outstanding.
      Highly functional.

      32

    • #
      TdeF

      Personally I believe this was normal weapons research. It escaped. How is not relevant to what happened next. The coverup.

      And I believe that the decision was taken to try to hide it all and infect the world and then blame the Americans. This is so childish it is possible. As a newly christened world power, in international matters China’s approach has been lacking in sophistication and Presient Xi seems like the old style communist leader pushing communist expansion and takeover. Trying to hide it simply became impossible with the internet, the videos and commentary out of Wuhan. Arresting and silencing people itself became a scandal even in China.

      And the continued attempt by ‘friends of China’ like WHO notably but also various lackies to actually try to pin the blame on America is childish in the extreme. Even posting blame in Arabic, trying to use the virus as a way to lever influence in the world. And the end result may be mixed, wins and losses. A loss of face certainly. But also a huge loss of trust by America and Europe that China would play by the rules.

      As the source of so many killer viruses in the last 20 years, Wuhan, the bats, the wet market and China are not to be trusted with our lives or to be the major supplier of pharmaceuticals to the rest of the world. Especially after they mooted witholding medicines as an international strategy. It exposed the world’s strategic weakness and again backfired spectacularly.

      So I read that many American companies are bringing their businesses home from China. Australian manufacturers like Jayco who make 11,000 caravans a year will stop sourcing their parts in China. And Australian builders and fabricators are starting to buy Australian steel again.

      China has demonstrated that under President Xi, it is not a good world citizen. There will not be a second wave. There should never have been a first wave except that China and WHO lied. And silenced Taiwan.

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      • #
        WXcycles

        China has demonstrated that under President Xi, it is not a good world citizen. There will not be a second wave. There should never have been a first wave except that China and WHO lied. And silenced Taiwan.

        Agree, there’s no way govts, businesses and populations and individuals will allow a second wave to get going again. But what may occur is an extension of the first-wave, via making premature opening attempts which fail inside about 6 weeks. That would be nuts, but I think we’ll see it in a few places.

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      • #
        ianl

        > ” It escaped”

        Nope. A virus doesn’t just hide in a corner, waiting for a chance open door to scuttle through. Of course it was carelessly leaked outside by a lab employee, unaware of being infected. That is the reason for the coverup (loss of face) and is of great consequence for any honest inquiry, despite your view that it doesn’t matter.

        There was nothing terribly secret about the Wuhan lab’s virology work. Many published papers over the last 15 years, including one key publication I’ve noted here, attest to that. Addressing the carelessness in allowing C19 to leak and the destructive loss-of-face panic to cover that up is the very key to global recovery, with the Chinese mainland of 1.4 billion people(not the CCP with its’ present structure) coming back out of this blackness.

        Peter S is right in that this website did offer good early advice and comment but in my view has slid into an unpleasant triumphalism. Jo Nova is making much of how hard it must be for non-medical science people to understand. No, it’s not – exponential functions are not exclusive to medicine, basic virology is easily grasped, evolutionary processes do not stop because we say so. Oh, and polio, smallpox are eradicated mostly because vaccines were developed, not because we isolated. Cherry picking …

        What is missing now the “curve is flattened, crushed, annihilated … or whatever word de jour is”, is a clear understanding of how this country now functions in paying for desperately needed imports. A few flickpasses here assume the iron ore and coking coal exports just continue without much interruption, and continue to China (yep !!) who will continue to pay us without much interruption. As Jo Nova assumes medical science must be hard, I see geoscience and engineering as too hard for most people to want to know. The hard currency will just keep flowing in to pay for years of isolation until we decide to un-isolate. Nope …

        We have almost no real manufacturing capacity left. In isolation, we cannot supply exported services, even if they were wanted. Our capital market is so thin that we cannot fund anything without overseas capital. Our billionaire paper “king”, one Mr Pratt, today wants the super funds to re-capitalise his manufacturing because our supply of paper products is exposed as unable to cope with demand surges (whatever the cause) – note that he cannot now find overseas capital, so your super is to be put at risk to generate loo paper.

        Our thermal coals, the bulk of which is mined in the Hunter Valley, supply the power grids of Taiwan, South Korea, a little to mainland China, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Pakistan, Myanmar, India. Most of the Hunter Valley mines are now owned by the Chinese, Indonesians, Thai, Indians … etc. Closing our international borders, insisting on 2 week quarantining for arrivals for years to come, blocking the flow of imported goods and expertise, will guarantee enormous damage to these countries as they deal with C19 and a crippled energy base. As Gigi Foster, UNSW economist noted a few days ago, it is absolutely horrible either way. [To understand why Aus thermal coals are in demand needs some geoscientific understanding.]

        For those who wish to incarcerate the 70+ cohort in indefinite isolation, just observe the special hell aged-care residents are in now. No children or grand-children, no control, absolute fear that every incoming shift-worker may inadvertently kill half of them. You wish to extend that to a segment of the population that is currently free of morbidities and fiercely independent until this virus is extinct ?

        Long post, likely to be censored, as are most of my posts. I do have a copy, of course.

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        • #
          robert rosicka

          ianl I agree with you on Australian manufacturing capacity and that’s about it , I have no idea where you get your info from but Polio has not been eradicated at all .
          It’s been reduced by two of the three strains and the third strain may only exist in the wilds of Pakistan and Afghanistan but nonetheless it still exists , such a long rambling post with rush to publish mistakes included .

          40

        • #
          TdeF

          Reasonable comments. The virus is an inanimate chemical structure, so it cannot escape as if it was alive. Escaped is meant to say that no one released it intentionally. Anthropomorphism, the giving of a living character. We cannot kill it, because it is not alive in the first place. etc. However the intent is clear.

          Then Murphy’s law means that if you create such a monster in quantity and the records indicate it was created years ago, it only takes one mistake in thousands of days. A laboratory animal sold to the wet market, as suggested. A leak in a pressure suit. A spill. A failure in hygiene. A thousand things and while escape conveys intent, in actual fact it may as well be.

          The curve flattening is a non scientific aspirational goal. The real intent is to drop daily infections to zero. This is the slope of the graph so it is the same as a flat graph, but the point of the lack of new infections is that it means extermination for a virus which can only reproduce inside a live host and will die in that host, one way or the other.

          I liken it to the Boogy man. Hide under the bed and it goes way. In this case, forever.

          It would been wonderful if in the Blitz the people of England could hide under their beds until the bombing stopped. But that was useless. And I find it amazing that people find doing nothing for a few weeks so hard. Not playing golf, not going to the beach, not shopping for things they do not need, not going bowling or to the pub. Why is being locked up with their families so hard? Now that’s the real problem. Parents having to talk with their children. Wives having to have conversations with their husbands.

          No wonder all the dogs have been bought and the kennels and pounds emptied!

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      • #
        JanEarth

        Tdef

        People way more versed in the science of Virology than you or me have all said it was not engineered. They would have detected this very quickly as apparently the signs are obvious.

        The P4 lab however was collecting Covid Virus to work with. I think it was more plausible to suggest that it escaped by accident as I have pointed out elsewhere.

        But you know what…It don’t matter. It’s out and we need to deal with it and we have to deal with the next one due in 2025

        BTW H1N1 came from America so it’s not always China.

        10

  • #
    SteveS

    Perspective…it’s about perspective and not letting your emotions/fear overide common sense.
    For perspective, in the US,
    1958 Asian Flu Killed 250,000 people.
    1968 Hong Kong Flu killed 170,000 people
    Corona so far, 45,000

    Save lives sure, but you should also be more than one dimensional and consider the effects of a lockdown.
    Bill you seem to be so emotionally wrought over this whole thing, one has to wonder if your able to think rationally…perspective Bill, perspective.

    So far seems like OZ has done good…now what. Whats the exit plan. For better or worse it looks like most countries headed for the turn. using mitigation. We’ll see what happens Next week as US starts to loosen up….somebody gonna have to put on the Big Boy Pants and make tough decisions….hopefully those making the decision will have perspective.

    As for Sweden, it’s not completely true that they haven’t taken any measures…more like a 50/50 effort so they are taking measures to limit personal contact. Say what you want about Swedens results, but they have fewer deaths/million than USA,France,Netherlands,Spain,Italy and UK. Again, they are not an example of a country not taking any measures to limit virus spread.

    Even with some of the wild Arse numbers floating around for true percent of people infected, even using the wildly cast out number of 5%, if someone is waiting for heard immunity…gonna be a long wait
    Again, perspective bill…keep your head screwed on straight and we’ll get through this thing

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Steve, If you have any links for your deaths from Asian flu & Hong Kong flu
      In which countries over what time period,
      Please provide them.
      Otherwise they are junk figures.

      This Wuhan COVID 19 disease has been around for just 4.5 months.
      An din that time it’s killed 177,000 plus.
      We in Oz are showing how to do it.
      The USA & Brazil & Sweden & the Netherlands,
      Are showing how not to do it.

      Pity that a lot of folks in those countries have died and will die
      To demonstrate the stupidity of their ‘strategies’.

      36

      • #
        Kalm Keith

        “In which countries over what time period,”

        Maybe you should get off your high horse and learn how to read.

        It clearly states that those figures were for the U.S.

        Here’s the Link.

        http://joannenova.com.au/2020/04/its-not-just-lungs-coronavirus-can-affect-brains-may-increase-stroke-risk/#comment-2315959

        KK

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        • #
          bobl

          Mr Kalm

          Also should be remembered that US population in 1958 was 174 million about half of what it is now. So multiply that toll by 2 to get a comparative gauge of lethality. Also bear in mind that having half the population density made it much harder for the ’58 flu.

          Yes these statistics don’t make it better for those who die, but death IS a consequence of birth. We have to remember that we do live in a dangerous world and at any time this sort of thing can happen. We need kalm sensible approaches to it, not the current mania. To do that we do need to bear in mind that everyone dies eventually. Some will from this, as some will from flu as some will from road accidents. We have a contract with god from our birth for the most part we accept the risk, for example we accept the risk of being one of 1100 road deaths each year over 10 times COVID-19 so far every time we get behind the wheel.

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          • #
            PeterS

            Well put. Realism as distinct of head in the sand approach.

            32

          • #
            Kalm Keith

            Good point, those 58 and 68 figures would be larger if a per population basis was used.

            21

          • #
            Bill In Oz

            How philosophical of you Bob.
            Very much in line with how our religions have always preached
            Whether Christian Jewish Buddhist or Hindu.

            But we live in a new modern world
            Where we understand & know a lot more
            Than any of the people who started those religions.

            We now know that
            These foreign viruses can be destroyed
            They are NOT a necessary part of human life

            I do not want to go back to the Dark Ages thanks

            13

    • #
      Kalm Keith

      Good comment Steve.

      In Australia the routine rates of death by suicide and in road accidents far outstrips the current death toll from CV19 for the last four months.

      Our leaders seem to have no sense of balance and most likely are applying the handiest remedy rather than the most informed one.

      33

      • #
        PeterS

        Our leaders never had a good sense of balance. It didn’t matter so much before but now it’s critical due the circumstances. PM Morrison mantra on reducing our emissions was brushed off here so often, except by myself. I was pretty much a lone voice but no matter. It wasn’t considered critical even though I believed it was as it was a surrender to the pro-CAGW alarmist position albeit a modest one. That’s one observation. Now that the situation is critical with the world on the brink of a depression with all its ugliness that might follow including wars and mass famines, we still fight among ourselves about whether we ought to relax our restrictions and by how much. That’s my second observation. Sad to say this site has lost much of its credibility based on those two observations.

        23

      • #
        Meglort

        It is quite true that Australia and NZ seem to be experiencing a very different infection profile to quite a few of our trading partners and political coalition.

        If this is the first and only wave for us, great.
        We will never know what it would have been like if countermeasures were not deployed against this virus in Australia. IMHO better to have overprepared and avoided than underprepared and regretted.

        In some other jurisdictions (e.g. UK and US) the current rate of death in the population is an SD or more away from the means in a bad flu season. If you do not think death to cancer rates doubling say for an example in a year in comparison in a major economy is anything other normal then our definitions of normal differ.

        That being said, how we pull out of this economic nosedive will be interesting. Hopefully what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger and without the shackles of a globalist cabal constantly seeding misery.

        30

    • #
      Steve of Cornubia

      ” … you seem to be so emotionally wrought over this whole thing, one has to wonder if your able to think rationally, Bill … somebody gonna have to put on the Big Boy Pants … Even with some of the wild Arse numbers floating around … even using the wildly cast out number of 5% … keep your head screwed on straight … “

      That gave me a chuckle. An emotional rant peppered with ad hominem, in which you tell others to maintain “perspective”.

      42

      • #
        PeterS

        When common sense and rational thought are thrown out the window things tend to get very heated. This site has deteriorated down to that level due to too much speculation, fear and scaremongering by those who fail to see the common sense approach of walking the middle ground and start discussing an exit strategy rather than harping on some silly notion we can void ourselves of the virus in a very short period even before we have a vaccine.

        44

      • #
        Kalm Keith

        Steve, fighting fire with fire?

        12

    • #
      RickWill

      The numbers you quote are insignificant compared with what would have happened if the 2019 corona virus was permitted to run free. It would have resulted in global chaos.

      Taiwan closed its borders and implemented highly effective contact tracing when there was ONE death – now 6 dead.

      Australia locked down when it had 7 deaths – now 74 dead.

      Thailand implement arrival temperature screening 2 months before their first death – now 48 dead.

      UK locked down when it had 335 dead – now 17335 dead.

      Spain locked down when it had 294 deaths – now has 21282 dead.

      Sweden outlawed mass gatherings on 11 March when death toll was 1, then closed senior Hugh schools and limited gatherings to 50 on 27 march when death toll was 105 – death toll now 1765.

      Do you notice a pattern here! Death toll now typically 10 to 20 times the number when controls were implemented and it will end up around 30 times the number of deaths at time of controlling contact. The virus averages around 20 days (6 doublings for most countries) from presentation to death or recovery. That would result in 64 times the number of deaths from any point in time to 20 days out if there were no controls. Effective controls has halved that outcome. Put another way, if there were no controls, and 1000 deaths on the 1st of the month then there would be 64k by the 20th of the month. In another 20 days there would be 4M dead; just chaos.

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      • #

        Careful, it almost looks like some people are arguing that “X regular predictable deaths over a year” are somehow equal to deaths in the first two months of a global pandemic which grows exponentially everywhere unless they have major lockdowns.

        There is an Elephant around here…

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  • #
    Ross

    I dont think the loss of smell and taste is confined to COVID-19. I have had lots of flu or cold infections over the years and quite commonly lose these senses. Sometimes takes weeks to be restored. Also, the loss of smell and in particular taste is a common trait amongst the elderly. Both my late mother and now my father ( in care since January, thankfully) both had/have lost their heightened sense of taste. Food needs to be saltier, coffee rather than tea etc.

    72

    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Ahh
      Some anecdotal malinformation.

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    • #
      Sapel Mirrup

      Yes, that’s true enough. Heavy colds and common influenza,sinus irritation, low zinc in the diet, some allergic conditions, may all contribute. Not to mention more serious issues such as neural damage due to MS, Alzheimers,diabetes and Parkinsons,in the long term, for example.

      60

  • #
    David

    The essence of this post is that the corona virus may do this or may cause that, we just don’t know. So better crush the curve until we do know.

    Can a proponent of this argument point to any other case, anywhere anytime, where in the face of a public risk, the Government response has been to shut down the economy – stating every life matters?

    81

    • #
      Kalm Keith

      No I can’t.

      Many decades ago we were routinely told to wash our hands at the appropriate time, to blow our nose into a handkerchief and not to sneeze on each other.

      What’s now going on is weird: the elites seem unable to sort fact from fiction and apply a highly visible crushing remedy to maintain media and voter approval.

      More thought needed.

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    • #
      PeterS

      In other words we have gone overboard on this? Perhaps. No one really knows. The time for analysis is later. Now we must start relaxing the restrictions in a controlled fashion. The curve is crushed. What are we waiting for? For the virus to be eliminated? Will never happen that quickly, if at all. That’s why vaccines are currently in development and testing stages. Let’s get moving again before the patient dies.

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      • #
        Sapel Mirrup

        One epidemiological aspect I don’t think is often discussed in the current crisis is the potential length of asymptomatic carrier chains, after the curve for new cases subsides to trivial daily values. Intrigued by this, I did some basic exponential and probability analysis, using initial values of R zero = 3.5 (may be too low) and serial interval of 4.5 days (probably about right based on recent clinical info). I set a period of 30 days and looked for N(30) of the exponential function to get the number of new cases expected on day 30 ceteris paribus , which totaled 4238. A long asymptomatic chain of carriers acts as covert pathway for the virus to hide and evade tracing, and ideally should be as short as possible for the odds to favour us. But there is a finite probability, albeit very small, that a given path 30 asymptomatic carriers long could occur by chance, before the next person in that chain shows distinct clinical symptoms. If the proportion of asymptomatic to symptomatic transmitters is 4:1 (I just plucked this from an earlier estimate – but could be wrong), then on day 30 you would expect to get about five people who each have been infected via a 30 carrier long covert pathway.

        This shows the dilemma one faces when the curve of confirmed cases is right down to single daily digits – that there is a definite chance that subsequent infections may extend for a while afterward, even after zero is reached for a few days in a row. The exact timing of these spurious ‘outbreaks’ will depend entirely on chance.

        The numbers above can be played around with of course, but I’m just outlining a possibility that means we may need to wait for longer than expected test period to make sure the virus really is locally extinct.

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        • #
          Bill In Oz

          For some people 14 days quarantine is not long enough
          This was illustrated today with a new infection being found here in SA
          A young woman back from overseas & in quarantine
          But with very mild symptoms that developed during quarantine
          Which she ignored..
          And was released from quarantine while still infectious..
          Bugger !

          04

        • #
          Kalm Keith

          TdeF has mentioned this too.

          01

        • #

          Sapel, thank you! Finally someone is doing some number estimates on how long we might need to watch the 0 0 0 0 new cases tick over and wonder whether there is still virus out there.

          I do appreciate this kind of analysis!

          It is hard when the only clue to an infection (without mass testing) is the wake the infection leaves in older friends or relatives. We can’t calculate it easily without knowing the rate of asymptomatic infection and also the rate that get into serious trouble and need hospital care.

          Jo

          20

        • #
          Bill In Oz

          Sapel I too have been wondering about the asymptomatic carrier problem.
          With the virus ‘hiding within’ such people,
          Surely it is even more important for the entire population
          To do the things which reduce the chances of being infected :
          1 : Wearing face masks ( which prevents the virus being breathed out into the air
          2: Practising ‘social distancing’ ( 2 meters spacing
          3: Washing hands thoroughly and often
          4: Avoiding gathering together in groups
          5: Staying home
          6 : Ensuring that we eat uncontaminated food
          7 : Taking vitamin D3, Zinc tablets, vitamin C & maybe melatonin.
          etc. etc.
          These measures all reduce the possibility of infection and so break the chain of infection.
          And then into our lungs

          00

        • #
          Bill In Oz

          Sapel I too have been wondering about the asymptomatic carrier problem.
          With the virus ‘hiding within’ such people,
          Surely it is even more important for the entire population
          To do the things which reduce the chances of being infected :
          1 : Wearing face masks ( which prevents the virus being breathed out into the air
          2: Practising ‘social distancing’ ( 2 meters spacing
          3: Washing hands thoroughly and often
          4: Avoiding gathering together in groups
          5: Staying home
          6 : Ensuring that we eat uncontaminated food
          7 : Taking vitamin D3, Zinc tablets, vitamin C & maybe melatonin.
          etc. etc.
          These measures all reduce the possibility of infection and so break the chain of infection.

          00

    • #
      RickWill

      the Government response has been to shut down the economy

      Two points –
      1. No government has shut down the economy. They have restricted non-essential activities to protect essential activities. Anyone stood down or paid off has to come to terms with the fact that their job is not regarded as essential.
      2. Most governments have ensured that all citizens are able to house and feed themselves by issuing new money into the economy.

      A vast number of people in Australia were already acting “irrationally” in early March hoarding toilet paper. The “rational” folk who did not hoard toilet paper had to find something else to wipe with when the stores ran out of toilet paper. Then there was irrational buying of masks as well as some durable and non-durable food items. Eggs and flour are still difficult to get here.

      Without government intervention to control the situation the globe would descend into chaos – it was already happening. Countries that acted slowly are now finding it difficult to get rid of the mounting piles of bodies. Meanwhile in Victoria, the biggest complaint appears to be prohibition on golf.

      53

  • #
    SteveS

    In Australias case, they had an opportunity with their low numbers to take a shot at it…That is common sense, it was a good gamble….so far. Unfortunately this spread of the virus was not even handed. Why we don’t know, but once the cat’s out of the bag so to speak, eradication is impossible, mitigation yes.

    I also don’t see anyone here arguing against lockdown steps taken so far in most countries. The point of topic, the elephant in the room… is now what. What’s the exit plan. Anyone who’s stabilized, not eliminated infections, but reduced them to a lower level, now has to consider how to move forward.
    Australia had a very low infection rate, but remember there is usually 2 or more waves with the “usual” pandemic. The Spanih flu’s second wave was worse than the first, and once again everyone is on the list. As i said previously, buying time is a valuable asset. Knowledge of the particulars of the virus and better methods to treat those infections are on-going and advancing everyday.

    The catch22 is everyday that goes by, the economy is taking a beating…anybodies guess as to what that portends

    As a side note..during the great depression…about as bad as it gets in the US economically, death rates actually went down and the general health of the population slightly improved…despite a sharp increase in suicides….go figure

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    • #
      WXcycles

      I think you were very right about this above Steve.

      And since you have your blinders on, it’s just possible that Oz is lucky they didn’t get the first round of chinese and european asymptomatic carriers

      I think we’ll succeed in eliminating the virus in the next 3 weeks, and strict quarantine will be maintained on international travel until effective and affordable abundantly produced antivirals and better testing becomes available, then quarantine will be eased.

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    • #
      RickWill

      Every country had the opportunity to do the same and avoid any economic impact other than China. They were the test case and caught by surprise. Taiwan (now 6 deaths) and Thailand (now 48 deaths) both acted in a timely fashion consistent with the tools they had. Taiwan set the standard for others to aspire to next time.

      Most countries now have the reproductive rate below 1 so the virus will eventually run out of hosts in those countries. The lower it is the better of course and the sooner the virus is crushed.

      Taiwan’s method – (a) early border controls after 1st CV19 death (b) effective automatic contact tracing. Both of these are requirements for a low risk recovery, albeit the contact tracing could be done manually in the fashion Australia has in place now but it is labour intensive.

      41

      • #
        WXcycles

        … albeit the contact tracing could be done manually in the fashion Australia has in place now but it is labour intensive.

        I thought auto-contact tracing was more a ‘gods-eye-view’ indicator which detected the otherwise unseen connections more reliably, which then still has to be followed up with a labor-intensive human investigation to ‘truth’ or else discard the contact trace? Even so I expect it’s earlier and faster, which is important in its own right, to limit the spreading, especially if cases circulating are already in the hundreds. You don’t want delays, but I think there’s always going to be a delay from the need to investigate all indicated contacts. If anything it probably increases the amount of labor need to address all of them quickly.

        I suspect Canberra will dispense with the app approach soon and develop a precise personal tracking and centralized logging of all devices based on TELCO ID and triangulation data (as if they don’t already do that, and have the software for that, and much more besides) then they’ll force detected and confirmed cases to use a specific govt supplied device until clear, plus 2 weeks more to be sure.

        i.e. a regular GPS tracker applied to a leg of the known case, plus parents legally responsible for the logged movement of all dependents, etc., seems to me a voluntary app is not going to be enough in this country. I just wouldn’t take the phone with me when I go out (I don’t now).

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  • #
    WXcycles

    Globally, with over 2.55 million cases (+1.55 million added in 20 days) the data has become very noisy, with larger swings between Sunday and mid-week. As numbers rise the swings become bigger each week. At this stage I suspect both the real-world case totals and total deaths (in the most infected countries) are more than can be tested, compiled and reported accurately each day. They certainly can’t be accurately reported some days of the week, and it seems that’s now becoming the general situation on more days of the week. Thursday and Friday may be the only days where we get a decent read of the global tend.

    A long list but I wanted to show what is happening at both ends of the spreading rate story, many countries are now moving towards conditions for recovery. They may have large numbers of actives but they’ll still clear most of those within 1 month. Getting to less than 1 percent spread per day will be hard, but increasingly possible as isolation continues to starve the virus.

    Countries with more than 500 active cases, sorted by daily spreading percentages:

    % New v Active … Country … Active Cases … New Cases
    20.9 … Nigeria … 560 … 117
    14.6 … Brazil … 16,013 … 2,336
    14.6 … Peru … 10,371 … 1,512
    13.6 … Bangladesh … 3,185 … 434
    13.4 … Singapore … 8,275 … 1,111
    11.9 … Djibouti … 831 … 99
    11.9 … Guinea … 555 … 66
    11.6 … Russia … 48,434 … 5,642
    11.6 … Saudi Arabia … 9,882 … 1,147
    10.0 … India … 15,460 … 1,541
    9.6 … Kazakhstan … 1,487 … 143
    9.4 … Mexico … 5,433 … 511
    9.2 … Pakistan … 7,291 … 673
    9.2 … Greece … 1,703 … 156
    8.8 … Qatar … 5,910 … 518
    8.1 … Armenia … 768 … 62
    7.8 … UAE … 6,266 … 490
    7.8 … Finland … 1,873 … 146
    7.8 … Oman … 1,262 … 98
    7.5 … Belarus … 6,091 … 459
    7.4 … Ukraine … 5,597 … 415
    7.4 … Azerbaijan … 595 … 44
    7.3 … Algeria … 1,267 … 93
    7.3 … Afghanistan … 906 … 66
    7.1 … Hungary … 1,598 … 114
    7.0 … South Africa … 2,352 … 165
    7.0 … Iran … 18,540 … 1,297
    6.9 … Denmark … 2,625 … 180
    6.8 … Canada … 23,400 … 1,593
    6.7 … Egypt … 2,356 … 157
    6.6 … Indonesia … 5,677 … 375
    6.5 … Bolivia … 527 … 34
    6.4 … Ireland … 6,077 … 388
    6.3 … Cuba … 790 … 50
    6.2 … Ivory Coast … 600 … 37
    6.1 … Morocco … 2,671 … 163
    6.1 … Bulgaria … 760 … 46
    5.9 … Turkey … 78,414 … 4,611
    5.7 … Chile … 5,716 … 325
    5.6 … Bahrain … 1,182 … 66
    5.5 … Colombia … 3,149 … 172
    5.2 … Argentina … 2,153 … 113
    5.1 … Kuwait … 1,657 … 85
    4.6 … Romania … 6,591 … 306
    4.5 … Serbia … 5,783 … 260
    4.4 … Panama … 4,318 … 191
    4.2 … Sweden … 13,007 … 545
    4.0 … Spain … 100,382 … 3,968
    3.9 … Uzbekistan … 1,315 … 51
    3.9 … Bosnia Herz … 854 … 33
    3.9 … UK … 111,363 … 4,301
    3.8 … Japan … 9,875 … 377
    3.8 … USA … 690,503 … 25,985
    3.7 … Belgium … 25,956 … 973
    3.2 … Moldova … 2,037 … 66
    3.2 … Poland … 8,158 … 263
    3.1 … Ecuador … 8,671 … 270
    Most countries below about 3.0% spreading level will be slowly recovering, France , Germany and Netherlands are there now.
    2.9 … Thailand … 655 … 19
    2.9 … Germany … 48,167 … 1,388
    2.8 … Slovakia … 927 … 26
    2.8 … Malaysia … 2,041 … 57
    2.7 … France … 98,073 … 2,667
    2.6 … Portugal … 19,700 … 516
    2.6 … Czechia … 5,079 … 133
    2.5 … Croatia … 1,059 … 27
    2.5 … Philippines … 5,508 … 140
    2.5 … Italy … 107,709 … 2,729
    2.5 … Israel … 9,251 … 229
    2.5 … Tunisia … 693 … 17
    2.4 … Netherlands … 29,968 … 729
    2.4 … Lithuania … 1,014 … 24
    2.3 … Austria … 3,411 … 78
    2.1 … Luxembourg … 2,870 … 60
    1.8 … Dominican Rep … 4,336 … 80
    1.8 … Cyprus … 674 … 12
    1.8 … Niger … 510 … 9
    1.7 … Switzerland … 7,185 … 119
    1.5 … Latvia … 606 … 9
    1.4 … Costa Rica … 513 … 7
    1.3 … Estonia … 1,340 … 17
    1.2 … Norway … 7,027 … 85
    1.1 … Australia … 1,889 … 20 (large drop in active cases)
    1.1 … China … 1,003 … 11
    0.8 … Slovenia … 1,070 … 9
    0.6 … N Macedonia … 952 … 6

    Countries with over 71 dead, over 2.5% died:

    % Died … Country … Total Deaths … New Deaths
    14.64 … Belgium … 5,998 … 170
    13.95 … Algeria … 392 … 8
    13.43 … UK … 17,337 … 828
    13.40 … Italy … 24,648 … 534
    13.16 … France … 20,796 … 531
    11.52 … Sweden … 1,765 … 185
    11.47 … Netherlands … 3,916 … 165
    10.42 … Spain … 21,282 … 430
    10.15 … Hungary … 213 … 14
    8.63 … Indonesia … 616 … 26
    8.12 … Mexico … 712 … 26
    7.56 … Egypt … 264 … 14
    6.62 … Philippines … 437 … 9
    6.36 … Brazil … 2,741 … 154
    6.25 … Iran … 5,297 … 88
    5.73 … Slovenia … 77 …
    5.60 … China … 4,632 …
    5.54 … USA … 45,318 … 2,804
    5.39 … Romania … 498 … 20
    5.27 … Switzerland … 1478 … 49
    5.18 … Iraq … 83 … 1
    5.04 … Greece … 121 … 5
    5.00 … Ecuador … 520 … 13
    4.86 … Dominican Republic … 245 … 10
    4.81 … Denmark … 370 … 6
    4.80 … Argentina … 151 … 9
    4.77 … Canada … 1,834 … 144
    4.72 … Colombia … 196 … 7
    4.55 … Ireland … 730 … 43
    4.52 … Morocco … 145 … 2
    4.07 … Poland … 401 … 21
    3.56 … Portugal … 762 … 27
    3.51 … Finland … 141 … 43
    3.43 … Germany … 5,086 … 224
    3.30 … Austria … 491 … 21
    3.25 … Bangladesh … 110 … 9
    3.21 … India … 645 … 53
    2.92 … Panama … 136 … 10
    2.86 … Czechia … 201 … 7
    2.75 … Moldova … 72 … 2
    2.71 … Peru … 484 … 39
    2.63 … Ukraine … 161 … 10
    2.51 … Norway … 182 … 1
    1.07 … Australia … 71 … 0

    Australia is clearing active cases fast:

    Recovered = 4,685
    Active = 1,889 (fell 415 cases overnight)

    Need to get daily spread percent to zero by the end of April, so we’ll be opening most of the economy during May. Only international travel and international tourism will still be missing from normal economic activity in June.

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Thanks WXCYcles for persisting with this task.
      So all pf us with open eyes and open minds
      Can realise what is happening across the planet.
      Of course some there with eyes wide shut
      And minds completely closed off
      [snip.]

      36

  • #
    geoge1st:)

    China is a ‘developing’ country .
    When will they develop a vaccine for ‘their’ virus
    and how much will it cost .

    40

  • #
    WXcycles

    After brain damage, cognitive skills can keep improving for up to a year or two as inflammation subsides and the brain adapts. We hope this happens after Coronavirus ARDS events. But this is another one of the unknowns about a new virus. What damage is permanent?

    Regular exercise is known to assist with nerve and brain repair and regrowth. Also excellent for reducing the risk of stroke and strengthening blood vessels.

    I do wonder what’s occurred to the earlier suggestions of damage to testes and male hormone production, the topic suddenly went very quiet.

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  • #
    Bruce of Newcastle

    Lots of things can trigger medical delirium. Opiate painkillers especially. I suspect the guy would’ve been receiving those, as when the virus attacks the lungs it can be excruciatingly painful. Delirium can affect younger people too in similar circumstances.

    Patient education: Delirium (Beyond the Basics)

    ● Undertreated pain (although excessive use of opioid pain medication for pain control can also impair brain function)

    How common is delirium? — Nearly 30 percent of older patients experience delirium at some time during hospitalization; the incidence is higher in intensive care units. Among older patients who have had surgery, the risk of delirium varies from 10 to greater than 50 percent.

    41

    • #
      Speedy

      G’day Bruce – nice to hear from you. From a fellow Metallurgist – Mike of QNI. (Pre Palmer of course!)

      20

      • #
        Kalm Keith

        Bruce is a Metallurgist?

        Same here. RBA NovoCastria.

        I used to work with Harbs who made the occasional post here years ago.

        KK

        10

        • #
          Speedy

          Hi KK. Yep, Bruce is a Met. A very good one. Technically he’s retired but that necktop computer of his still has lots of goodies in it…

          National Met’s Day is celebrated in September in Perth – maybe see you there?

          Cheers,

          Speedy

          10

  • #
    Hartog van den Berg

    “the all-cause mortality rates are higher than we’d expect due to Coronavirus”
    Who expects, how much and why?

    30

    • #

      All cause mortality is tracked on a weekly basis in most countries. See the New York “off-the-chart” graph. There has been no week or month like it in the last twenty years.

      While All cause mortality has dropped in nearly every place that has a lockdown (due to less accidents and less infections) it has risen dramatically in places like New York. So we expect a certain number of deaths every week, but when twice as many people die, we can estimate that say, 5,000 people are dying of some new and different cause. In the case of NY, I think about 3,500 of the 5,000 were recorded as coronavirus, but that means 1,500 were now dying of some other new cause.

      Is that undiagnosed corona, or is it collateral damage due to the loss of normal hospital care, or is it that corona increases the occurence of heart attacks?

      20

  • #
    7887

    A lot of doctors are saying this is more like altitude induced hypoxia .

    The lack of oxygen in the blood obviously will have an affect on the brain and this may be causing the delirium rather than the virus itself infecting the brain.

    70

  • #
    Roger Knights

    Here’s a long, recent, high-quality, medical-oriented, and very depressing article on why Covid-19 isn’t like the flu and will be hard to treat. (I haven’t read the comments here yet, so I don’t know if this has been cited already.):

    “How does coronavirus kill? Clinicians trace a ferocious rampage through the body, from brain to toes”
    By Meredith Wadman, Jennifer Couzin-Frankel, Jocelyn Kaiser, Catherine Matacic Apr. 17, 2020 , 6:45 PM
    From the journal “Science” by the AAAS.

    https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/04/how-does-coronavirus-kill-clinicians-trace-ferocious-rampage-through-body-brain-toes

    30

  • #
    • #
      Bill In Oz

      A very pessimistic statistical analysis of the USA.
      Who knew that in New Jersey 50% of people tested are positive to Wuhan COVID 19 ?

      11

  • #
    TdeF

    And in general Wuhan Flu news, we are again at 8 reported infections for the country for the day! Although this can double overnight.

    As general comment too, I just rode around the Port of Melbourne area, the busiest dock South of Singapore and it was flat out. The trucks were flying and the whole place was buzzing. And this is not the bulk handling dock area for wheat, wool, sugar, minerals. It is the general container dock and some bulk handling.

    And I noticed the builders are all busy, from the house level to the new underground to the councils and general construction. As I wrote before, a lot of businesses like plumbers and electricians and cleaners and rubbish collection have little direct contact with the public. People see shops as small business, but it is only a fraction of what is going on.

    Despite PeterS’ insistence, the Australian economy is NOT in a comma.

    51

    • #
      PeterS

      So in believing that our economy is not in a coma implies we can stay the way we are indefinitely until the virus is gone. I have to disagree. The economy will eventually be beyond a coma. It will be terminal.

      BTW you misspelled coma. I was criticised for doing the same. Just saying.

      23

      • #
        TdeF

        The total number of infections today, across this country of 26 million people is 8. Soon it will be zero. Two weeks after when there is no known person with the active virus in this country, it is gone. Mission accomplished. Just saying.

        21

  • #
    Meglort

    Perhaps a much better of determining impact:
    https://www.thailandmedical.news/news/covid-19-global-news-daily-figures-of-deaths-as-a-result-covid-19-by-most-countries-grossly-underreported

    Determining the delta from a baseline vs. trying to count heads makes a lot of sense from a population perspective.

    This damned thing does need to be eradicated wherever possible.
    Clearly not just the flu…

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Thanks for that Meglort.
      I had forgotten about the Thai Medical News website.
      As we got more and more focussed on the Wuhan Covid 19 disease in Australia.
      But it is important to stay abreast of the situation in other countries that do not get MSN coverage.

      12

      • #
        Meglort

        They have some edgier articles too sometimes, edgy breaks up living the reset.

        Chris Martenson (@PP) has been on this baseline deathrate lift too.
        There is an inexplicably large growth in deaths in 2020 at a population level.

        If it is not CCP-V, something else is killing off lots of folks in parallel.
        Starting assumption is that it is CCP-V.

        But I had also got more caught up in the local theatre. Life is weird ATM.

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  • #
    tom0mason

    An interesting coincidence, here are the clinical symptoms …

    In mild cases, pulmonary examination while the patient is at rest usually is normal. With exertion, tachypnea, tachycardia, and diffuse dry (cellophane) rales may be observed.21 Oral thrush is a common coinfection. Fever is apparent in most cases and may be the predominant symptom in some patients. Extrapulmonary disease is rare but can occur in any organ and has been associated with use of aerosolized pentamidine prophylaxis.22

    Hypoxemia, the most characteristic laboratory abnormality, can range from mild (room air arterial oxygen [PO2] ≥70 mm Hg or alveolar-arterial PO2 gradient [A-a] DO2 <35 mm Hg) to moderate ([A-a] DO2 ≥35 to 500 mg/dL is common but also non-specific.24 The chest radiograph typically demonstrates diffuse, bilateral, symmetrical “ground-glass” interstitial infiltrates emanating from the hila in a butterfly pattern;21 however, in patients with early disease, a chest radiograph may be normal.25 Atypical radiographic presentations, such as nodules, blebs and cysts, asymmetric disease, upper lobe localization, intrathoracic adenopathy, and pneumothorax, also occur.

    [my bold]

    From https://aidsinfo.nih.gov/guidelines/html/4/adult-and-adolescent-opportunistic-infection/321/pneumocystis-pneumonia

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  • #
    7887

    Just heard on news that this time last year we had no Covid 19 cases but 7000 flu cases.
    This year we have 6500 Covid 19 cases and just 19 yes 19 flu cases.

    Sounds highly suspicious to me.

    Let’s call everything Covid 19 so we can control the populace.

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  • #
    MudCrab

    As Far As Is Reasonably Practical.

    There is no ‘Safe’ outside of the delicate minds of snowflakes.

    The real world is a risk. EVERYTHING is a risk. You cannot make an situation 100% safe, you can instead only attempt to reduce the risk As Far As Is Reasonably Practical. Look it up. It is a real principle.

    This is the real world, not some petri dish experiment. We can’t just go on and on about flattening and crushing curves because there comes a time that the requirements to flatten this curve – assuming it can even be done in the first place – are no longer reasonably practical.

    Statistically roughly 450 people in Australia die each day. Out of the top 20 causes of death 18 are what we might loosely call ‘old age’ and the median age of those dying can easily be regarded as ‘old’.

    The exceptions are ‘Intentional Self Harm’ and ‘Influenza and Pneumonia’, both of which kill roughly 3000 a year. Given that you don’t have to have flu to die from Pneumonia it can be argued that Intentional Self Harm kills more than the Influenza each year. The other difference between the two is the Influenza/Pneumonia is still a killer of ‘old people’ (median age 89.3) while Intentional Self Harm (aka KILLING YOURSELF) has a median of 44.4

    (abs.gov.au – look these up for yourself)

    So, 450 a day from all causes, or 70 total since first of March. Statistically if you are an Australian under 50 you still literally have more chance of being eaten by a shark. Given the risk of shark attack should the powers that be make extra efforts to reduce the risk of shark attacks in Australia? Extensive shark fencing on all beaches? Personal trained dolphins for all swimmers? Bans on all water activity in depths greater than 300mm? Well they could, but they don’t. Reasonably Practical.

    That is how the world works. That is the principle to which engineering works. No, it isn’t fixed because life isn’t fixed. Yesterday’s best working practice may become tomorrow’s embarrassment or horror. But it IS how society operates even if many of you do not realise.

    When is it going to end?

    Where is the exit?

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    • #
      Kalm Keith

      A good read, thanks.

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    • #
      PeterS

      Yet another sensible and realistic viewpoint. Finally this site is getting back to a common sense theme. Thank you.

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      • #

        But obviously PeterS some of us still don’t understand why it’s “not sensible” to prevent a future exponential death curve vastly larger than all the usual predictable numbers. Despite repeated questioning, I never seem to get an answer as to how it is sensible to ignore ice rinks full of bodies, and army trucks of coffins, mass graves, pleas from doctors, deaths of medical staff, a doubling of total deaths per week, China losing 80% of it’s economy for a month, and medical studies of an increase in heart attacks, cognitive deficits, and strokes.

        Keen to hear…

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        • #
          Sunni Bakchat

          Jo, I think the answer is that the cost of flattening the curve is hugely expensive at present but is likely to come down dramatically in the very near future as we get to better understand epidemiologically how the virus replicates and how to reduce the cost of treatment. How low will that cost go though? Is there a rate of replication trade-off resulting from same. If replication can be stopped, well and good. History however suggests high transmissability diseases don’t go down without a very long fight.

          Taking the above into account raises the temporal dimension to this virus. Ice rinks full of bodies, trucks of coffins, mass graves, please from doctors, etc. are a temporal phenomenon laden with emotion. There are obvious reasons we don’t want them. But Annually 1040 deaths in one week is numerically identical to 20 deaths a week. From an economic point of view, all things considered, it would make sense to bear a high societal cost in the short term whilst infections and replication rates are high, but not in the long term where societal cost of prevention per infection shows dramatically diminishing return from effort. From a health perspective, it would be better to chase the lowest number of deaths per week over the long term. But this must have a societal cost that is proportionate to the benefit achieved. The point being that the societal cost of the covid-19 strategy to date is justified in the number of lives saved, but the societal cost going forward is not likely to be justified where case numbers are low. The temporal nature of matters means, all things being equal, the overall amount of deaths will be the same over an extended period in the absence of viral mutation, herd immunity, advances in treatment or prophylaxis. The latter which, for the record, I hope come as soon as possible.

          In the absence of advances in treatment or prophylaxis, should we not be considering the likely longer term death rates from this virus in terms of how quickly and cost effectively the numbers can be lowered. Not factoring the true societal cost of reduction of the virus’s replication would be an argument appealing more to emotion than logic rather than the other way around. Surely the scientific method relies upon placing logic first?

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    • #
      PeterS

      Oh as for the exit, I’ve been asking the same sort of question but have been ridiculed. So far the exit strategy is to wait about until another 3 weeks. I hope it’s not too late by then.

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  • #
    tom0mason

    I note that ‘normal’ pneumonia can cause mental problems especially in elderly people …

    Item 11 in https://www.activebeat.com/your-health/10-common-symptoms-of-pneumonia/

    As pneumonia is a condition that causes inflammation and infection, it’s possible for it to interfere with brain function and possibly lead to delirium, which Healthline.com defines as “an abrupt change in the brain that causes mental confusion and emotional disruption.”

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  • #
    TdeF

    What we have also learned about viruses is that with the internet, television, mobile phones, sms, email we can coordinate a response to any invading virus. Because while there are those who think this virus only kills ‘old people’ and no one cares about ‘old people’ as they are useless, that is just luck.

    The 1918 Spanish flu killed people with 90% in the 20-50 age group and not the young or the ‘old’.

    It is not for any section of society to decide someone else has to go, be locked up in solitary confinement while they go to the pub. We are in this together. And 99% of all societies have of their own accord agreed to isolate for the common good, something no police force could possibly force without weapons.

    The invention of the unarmed English Bobby was based on this. That policing by armed soldiers led to assault on your own people. The English Bobby is still unarmed and relies on the goodwill of the population and the fact that most people are interested in the common good. They use a trained and armed ‘flying squad’ to deal with deadly force.

    And this idea that society only works because people agree to drive on the same side of the road, wait at traffic lights, obey the speed limits and not assault others. The police then only have to deal with those who flout this. It was how the British ruled India for so long, the people agreed. And they left only when the people told them they no longer agreed.

    That is civilization. All for one and one for all. And those who felt that other people should be locked up so that they could party were in a tiny minority. Across the world the streets are empty. And our amazing success shows the way to so many. And despite the gainsayers. Now we will show them how to get back to our lives without this all happening again. Hard borders, testing, eternal vigilance, science.

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    • #
      Kalm Keith

      TdeF,

      I have always admired your comments, and this one contains so many good points.

      There is a paragraph that I find difficult to relate to:

      “Because while there are those who think this virus only kills ‘old people’ and no one cares about ‘old people’ as they are useless, that is just luck.”

      I can recall, and very clearly, the age distribution of the first six people to die “from” CV19 here in Australia. It was extraordinary.

      I can recall the photograph of the New York family which lost at least four members to CV19.

      I can recall the film of a 41 year old young lady who contracted CV19 on a cruise.

      Unfortunately this is not a lab experiment and there are many factors that are peculiar to each CV19 grouping to make it difficult to compare groups.

      All of this is overshadowed by the vagaries of identifying CV19 which leaves me pondering the fact that Influenza cases here in Australia in 2020 are essentially Nil compared to the same time last year.

      There’s a serious possibility that the cure being imposed is going to do great damage to our society and make CV19 in Australia seem a bit of trivia.

      KK

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      • #
        TdeF

        I would like to think that most people taking a few weeks off does not do great damage to our society. After all, we do it every year anyway and it is not a disaster. The Europeans take six weeks off. And people have accumulated sick leave and annual leave and savings and they are allowed to access their super and many will get cheques from the government to ease the load. The previous generation had none of these things. They had soup kitchens.

        As previously, the only people I see in real trouble are those in the massive, even bloated and sometimes fake tertiary sector and the airlines. As I wrote elsewhere, the first is not before time. And the second is a change in society which may be semi-permanent. It happened in the US after 911, people questioning their need to fly at all on business. Perhaps a third is the change in patterns of life as people find they can work well telecommuting, reducing the load on roads, smog, fuel consumption, wear and tear and of course the saving in people time. A lot will not go back to 9 to 5 in an office. This was not possible a decade ago.

        Changes will come from this, many of them good, but changes. And the short term loss of the 5 million Chinese visitors a year may be balanced by 12 million Australians having their holidays at home or in the South Pacific they never visit. Changes.

        But since WWII the world has been in rapid change, some good and some bad. We could all make lists. Gay marriage? It would not even make sense in the 1950s. Does the life in the 1950s even begin to compare to life today? What is different in the normal home today against the normal home of the 1950s. Just about everything. Hot water, cars, electricity, telephones, power points, refrigerators, air conditioning, microwaves, remote controls, mobile phones, wall to wall carpets, en suites, carports or garages, dishwashers,washing machines, steam irons, home delivery,..

        So I do not fear great damage, but change is frightening to some. The big change is the prospect of eliminating the annual viral invasion of Australia, a saving of 2,000 lives a year, 60,000 in the US. Longer, better lives for everyone. We have an innoculation for pneumonia now, free for the over 60s. Another for Shingles, a curse. There is so much which is better.

        We should not fear the future. Change is certain. And generally good, even amazing. Maybe though we will not be able to go to Paris in 24 hours for a mere $1000. Or plan weddings in Bali for a weekend. Or a quick trip to Las Vegas. In ten years, this challenge will all be the distant past, forgotten and I hope not viewed as a disaster but a triumph for Australia, despite the changes and who remembers changes? A new car is an old car in just a few weeks. It is always like this.

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        • #
          Kalm Keith

          TdeF,

          Again, a lot of good comments and perspective.

          My concern is this: a solution is being pushed through, and it is seriously misinformed in so many ways that make serious questioning essential.

          Past experience with the Global Warming issue, The Gay issue and Gay Marriage issue, the EEUs Migrant issue shows that governments will only give as much attention to a problem as is necessary to get past it.

          Rarely do they actually define and fix things properly.

          They haven’t done well here with CV19.

          KK

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          • #
            TdeF

            Thanks. I still do not know what you expect defines a good job.

            The direction from the Federal and State government has been exemplary. Sure, perhaps a bit heavy on the golf and the beaches but surely that does not matter. The many other actions of government have been excellent, as shown by the incredibly good results. Supplies, borders, testing, coordination, banking, superannuation, emergency cash, clearing hospitals to be ready for what would have been an overload, ventilators, sourcing masks and personal protection equipment generally. It has been a sterling job in our semiprivatized system. And organizing private hospitals to be ready for the overflow from public hospitals. And shutting down the airports and terminals and dealing with the dozens of cruise boats. The only disaster being the startling decision to send all the passengers on the Ruby Princess home, which will be the subject of a major inquiry.

            And even our Premier, Daniel Andrews really understood the importance of distancing. No idea of herd immunity.

            So the hairdressers are going back. The builders have not stopped. Restaurants have all developed their take away and Australia Post has become a parcel delivery service with mail only every second day, permitted by government just today.

            And it has been explained to most. The fears of economic ruin are just that. If the big shopping centres evicted everyone who did not pay their rent, they would have no shops open. I think you will find a lot of accomodations throughout society, simply because there was no choice.

            My view has been to try to enjoy it. After all, for many people it is a dream to stay home every day. I am sure a lot of people are heartily sick of it now, again not a bad thing.

            So I fail to see a major problem. In fact the empty streets are quite a novelty, amazing. Then there is the dog walking. There are just so many new dogs in our neighbourhood.

            A month from now it will be as if it never happened, except that businesses which were running too close to the wind like Virgin will be in big trouble. And strange pop up Tertiary institutions living on endless supplies of high fee paying foreign students. Often in courses without real accreditation, I suspect.

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            • #
              TdeF

              And I have to remind everyone how recently Australia was not a nation of endless coffee shops and little restaurants and boutique shops. Every old milk bar which hung on through the 1980s and 1990s has been reborn as a coffee shop, meeting place, library, social centre. Old single fronted shops have become tiny ethnic restaurants serving Thai, Japanese, Turkish, Greek, French, Fusion and more cuisines and styles. How they make ends meet amazes me.

              Many of the hotels are closed but those who survive have good restaurants now in the old dining room and it’s no longer just a pie or pastie and beer at the front bar. So we are missing what we never had before, thanks to the vast number of people of other cultures drowning out the old British pub traditions of rubbish food and beer. Even the petrol stations are nearly all gone, as people serve themselves. Changes. Like home delivery.

              So things will keep changing, adapting. I see these few weeks as interesting as people miss what is in fact so new to them, especially getting a caffee latte or capuccino and croissant in the morning. In fact that is all very new anyway.

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            • #
              Bill In Oz

              Yes ‘strange pop up Tertiary institutions’ in odd locations
              Who’ s customers are ‘paying’
              For the right to become permanent residents…
              Without this cute little benefit
              The paying customers would not be there.

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  • #

    Top 10 Unsolved Mysteries Of The COVID-19 Pandemic
    The Covid-19 pandemic is changing the world in unexpected and unprecedented ways, going well beyond wild animals reclaiming urban spaces and amateur music performances on Instagram. At the time of writing this, close to two million people around the world have tested positive for the virus with over 125,000 deaths,[1] and the projections go well over what we’d call ‘manageable’. The human cost also includes the many millions around the world who’ll suffer in the forthcoming financial recession, which—by some expert estimates—may be our worst one since the Great Depression.Pakistan Talk shows list, international, technology, sports, showbiz, business and Insurance, Live News feed, Breaking News, Political Discussion, Forum, Pakistani Scandals.
    [Sorry this got caught in the spam filter? -- Jo]

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  • #
    TdeF

    From this excellent site

    Today’s state and territory reports the number of new infections is now 12

    _______ACT QLD NSW NT SA TAS VIC WA
    Cases __0___0____5__0__1___4__2__0

    QLD clear. WA Clear. TAS is a new entrant, thanks to two Ruby Princess people sent home. A disaster, but getting under control.

    There is hardly a country in the world which approaches these figures.

    For those States which are clear of infections, the countdown is starting. Two or three weeks with no cases and it is gone when everyone is out of quarantine and hospital. Victoria and SA close behind. NSW as always is the biggest but five cases is incredibly small.

    Such fantastic results. Joanne was absolutely right, despite what has been said.

    And now to restart the country in mid May. So you can play golf, go to the beach, hang around in pubs. And with a new view of what matters in your life, having been asked to stay at home for a few weeks. It is hard to believe what families went through in WWII for six long, long years when we lost 27,000 people. Some Australians now have a real problem just staying home for six weeks. Now that’s unbelievable.

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      TdeF, There is a mistake there for for SA.
      I saw a report on Channel 7 Adelaide news at 6.00 pm
      One young woman was reported as positive to Wuhan 19 Virus today.
      This person had mild symptoms while in quarantine but did not report the,
      She was then released from 14 day quarantine while still infectious.
      Clearly for some peopel 14 days is not long enough.

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      • #
        TdeF

        Clearly she was released too early. Yes, 14 days is clearly not enough without accurate testing.

        The numbers are from the legally mandated reporting of every new cases. She may have been reported already and so would not count as a new infection legally. They have to quickly find everyone she could have infected.

        I have worried about this 14 day period. Who decided on this as adequate?

        14 days is very short by international and historical standards based on sheer experience. It was called quarantine from the French quarante which means 40 days, not 14.

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        • #
          Bill In Oz

          Yes indeed TdeF

          But actually Quarantine is from the Venetian

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          • #
            TdeF

            How did you get a red thumb for that? There are about three red thumbers raiding this site, because they can.

            As for quarantine, it is both French and Italian, a cognate between the languages and closer to quarantaine or ‘about forty’. It hardly matters as it developed from the 12th to 16th centuries. The other influence was that so many countries were fluent in French anyway, even Russia where the nobility spoke French and Russian to the servants and dogs. And until Elizabeth I, the English court spoke French. It was the lingua Franca until the 20th century.

            My point though is that it means 40 in any Roman language.

            The Americans kept this French tradition going in formal, military and navy terms with French terms like mayday for m’aide, help me. And leftenant for leiutenant, where the original meaning was in place of (Lieu) the original officer, tenant. It’s odd because lieu in context means place, not lieu or ‘left’ as against right. So it’s based on a misunderstanding. There is no rightenant.

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            • #
              TdeF

              The Spanish or Portuguese is also cuarenta for forty, pronounced as quarenta, four and ten. The Northern countries all have versions of Forty, four and ten.

              But none of them are fourteen.

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            • #
              Bill In Oz

              Re “How did you get a red thumb for that?”

              Ahh you noticed TdeF…
              I had not till I read your comment…
              There is a faction of commentators on the blog
              Who red thumb everything I write..
              Did you notice the bundle of red thumbs
              For my comment about the
              Communist Party of China ?

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      • #

        Bill, 14 days is long enough for honest people who report it when symptoms develop. Perhaps they all need testing on Day 14 before release as well.

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  • #
    cedarhill

    An interesting aspect of the Race For CV-19 Vaccines which describes some of the bio aspects of attacking the attacker:

    https://unitedwithisrael.org/corona-vaccine-design-earns-tel-aviv-u-scientist-a-us-patent

    The common point on vaccines: “When” will be months away. If ever. Efficacy may be similar to other respiratory like viruses and be no better than the best ever one at 60%.

    And everyone should really focus on what kicked off all the actions: are the hospitals and medical industry able to cope with any projected volume of new, severe cases? If one tosses out all those models (ala like the complete inaccurate global warming models), then the debate should be
    1. are we now prepared for treating them if removal of all “mitigation” actions
    2. if (1.) is No, then what is prudently necessary and when can a Yes be attained
    After all, the only and original reason, ever, was to eliminate “unnecessary excess” deaths…not anything else however the narrative and morphing or ignoring the original.
    2.

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  • #
    Gavin pruden

    I know this is a virus page and I don’t know if you have seen this but you NEED to watch planet of the humans directed by of all people mike Moore . It’s the most damaging thing against The corporate green machine I have seen in the last twenty years. These people still believe the whole CO2 is evil an thing but they get into the windmill,solar and biofuel industry’s like you would not believe. If you can get the green believers to watch this due to the mike Moore connection your going change a lot of minds. It’s on u tube and I apologise if your already aware of this film. Watch the whole thing and grin.

    [Thanks Gavin see Jo's next post today] ED

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  • #
    SteveS

    To be fair Keith, I had one or two “nasties’ in there…to the point of how intolerant this sight has become
    to differing opinions and the lapdog nannies who demean anyone who holds a differing opinion. You have your usual sycophants who don’t tolerate differing opinions, and the result is sensorship. Kind of like what the AGW boys do. How ironic :o )

    Side note, check out Ourworldindata.com interesting collection of customizable graphs regarding corona Virus

    SteveS

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    • #
      Kalm Keith

      Steve #38.

      Good points, and “sycophantic lapdogs” seems less likely to attract attention.

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    • #

      SteveS, both parties in that FlameWar got “sensored” and told off. I’ll republish either of your two total censored comments (you pick) that show that this site is “Kind of like what the AGW boys do. How ironic.” I’ve emailed both comments to you so you can find the scientific references and data we hide.

      Or maybe you’re being a bit precious?

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  • #
    John

    I read your blog because it appeared so reasonable on the global warming agenda. But, I have been disillusioned that you bought so wholeheartedly into the Covid-19 scam. “Crush the curve”. That rubbish is being put deeper and deeper to sleep with each new day of data.

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  • #
    markx

    Well.

    Ain’t that a stroke of genius.

    “… a controlled approach to re-opening is needed…”

    Geez. Who da thunk? We are surely beset by geniuses on all sides.

    01

    • #
      Kalm Keith

      A fair enough point but maybe it referred to the alternative the seems to be implied by the mainstream.

      The general idea seems to be that we wait until all is quiet, wait another three weeks, then open everything up.

      One idea of the staged opening might be to have infected people quarantined in a warm, dry region, and then carefully reopen areas cleared. That way only the quarantine station is waiting. I think we need to be very mindful of the damage being done to individuals under the current crushing system.

      KK

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  • #
    DOC

    Herd Immunity. The reports that most people who get few symptoms also develop few
    or small antibody titres to this virus, will be lucky to get just a few months of
    protection – if any at all – blows the concept of ‘Herd Immunity’ out of the park.

    AS a further reflection of just how smart this virus is – it’s almost laughing at us -
    the boffins are suggesting that those few that ‘we’ think of as sacrificial lambs, a cost of
    doing business for the rest, those that get the more severe form of the disease are the
    ones most likely to get a higher antibody titre and protection (maybe) for a year or so.
    The biggest joke of all, if this turns out to be reality is, society may become dependent
    on those few oldies, >60yo, to protect and service the rest in hospitals and quarantines.
    How the wheels turn!

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    • #
      DOC

      Thinking about it further, with the current concepts about how this virus works, where
      it ills and kills almost by using the immune system over-reaction of the host, against the host,
      I wonder if the little-or-no-symptom group and kids are saved by their immune system
      by somehow having it not react so fiercely to the viral presence. Do upper airway mechanisms
      clear the virus more efficiently?

      Do they actually have some immune system in their upper airways that knocks off the bulk of the viral load before it can get to the lungs? Are the upper airways of these younger groups more moist than in the aged or those taking some medications? Does that extra moisture trap more particles and/or is it endowed with antibodies that then knock down the virus, so little gets to the lungs, is more easily handled and presents just as a dry cough. The CAT scan films show such little (but
      present and confined) reaction. When one coughs there may be a more efficient and sensitive cough reflex than in the aged. So many questions! So small the antibody response.

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    • #
      SteveS

      Currently, i don’t think anyone knows What,if any, immunity is provided by having been infected and suffered only light symptoms. Even with a low Titre, it might well be just enough of a jumpstart to avoid re-infection.
      But again nobody knows for sure, just making assumptions from previous corona virus outbreaks. I never could understand why anyone would even look to heard immunity…I don’t think it has ever happened naturally, though through vaccines, Polio I believe, I can see the concept as working.
      Even throwing some of these off the wall “hidden” asymptomatic infection guesstimates added to the known cases, still only gives you a population infection rate of a few percent if I’m not mistaken. Epidemiologists for the r naught value of Corona estimate a required 45-75% infection rate to achieve Herd Immunity. So, natural (no vaccine) Herd Immunity doesn’t look to attractive, actually looks pretty horrifying.
      I think Sweden mentions this in their approach to the Virus. That”s a little scary.. I kind of get the “Das Boat” feeling where the rivets started popping.

      Interesting times ahead

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  • #
    Bill In Oz

    Once again Jo is ahead of the curve.
    This is an ABC interview with Dr Thomas Oxley, an Australian who is head of Neurology at Mt Sinai hospital in New York. He is seeing and treating Wuhan COVID 19 disease patients in their 30′s & 40′s suffering strokes & brain complications because of this disease.

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-04-23/research-suggests-coronavirus-can-cause-blood-clots-and-strokes/12176826

    10

  • #
    Raving

    No country has followed the exponential curve to 50% of population infected. Is there an example? Not Brazil. Not Ecuador. Maybe social distancing is a 20th century human response to obvious epidemic with people dropping dead in the streets. I don’t know. The death toll is chronically overpredicted by epidemiologists.

    Alternately, isolated clusters such as old folks home and meat packers reliably grow and grow in infection until 50% or greater. What is not to have the infection grow exponentially until it saturates a population. Maybe the long term care homes are more susceptible and have loads of comorbid vulnerabilities. Nevertheless, food packers and ships also have infections that grow to 20% 30% or more of the tightly interacting group of people. Again, the infection spreads to a good portion of a cluster population.Why wouldn’t it do so in a wider setting such as a whole country?

    You can talk of mutated strains, asymptotic transmission or even seasonality. Waiting to see the numbers develop or fade

    NY state county level map. Look at the individual per capita figures. Ranges from 1,680 to 2,999 per 100k for confirmed cases (1.7% – 3.0% of the population. Confirmed cumulative cases)

    NYC, NY has the bulk of the population but Rockland county has twice the per capita density. Expect the results for NYC are heterogeneous as well

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/us/new-york-coronavirus-cases.html?referringSource=articleShare

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Raving,
      No country has yet done universal testing of it’s population; In fact none have even tried.
      Why ?

      Because the antibody tests are at this stage unreliable so there is no point at this time.
      As As for Ecuador & Brazil ( or lots of other countries like Indonesia, the Philippines, India, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Mexico etc ) there is not the money to spend on such a program.

      So your statement is at this stage wrong. It pre-empts the actuality and so is irrelevant.

      10

    • #
      SteveS

      Population density for Rockland County NY …. 1,156.4 people per square mile (449.0/km²)
      Population Density for NYC 5 boroughs 26,403 people per square mile (10,194/km²),
      NYC population density is much higher than Rockland County, there is no comparison
      I live in Rockland County.

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        Raving

        Whyis the Rockland per capita total infection almost twice as high as NYC (3.0 versus 1.7 per 100 people)?

        Yes I accept that the popdensity f Rockland is much lower and also that the total numbers in NYC are much higher yielding a lower variance (variable statistical abberation)

        Would have thought the much higher poppulatin density in NYC caused higher rate of transmission. The NYT numbers say the per capita of Rockland in almost twice that of NYC

        Conversely, the recent serological test indicated higher per capita antibodies in NYC (looking for reference)

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    PeterS

    Bill is not the only one that’s not paying attention. Going by the number of red thumbs everywhere there are many who are so paranoid and delusional it’s not funny. This is so ironic but yet not so surprising. It’s a human condition of fear. We are witnessing here the mirror image of how the gullible among the CAGW community have been conned and declared the world is coming to an end due to man-made climate change. Now we have people declaring it’s the end of the word if we relax our restriction too much too early. Oh well, perhaps it meant to be this way. Humans are such a dumb species in general. It’s time.

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    Kalm Keith

    Guttpella tok. Mi lykim dispella tok.

    32

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    PeterS

    Cool your jets.

    63

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    PeterS

    Your true colours are now exposed to all. You don’t like free speech.

    44

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    Bill In Oz

    There is no right to abuse
    And ad hominems here.
    Go play that stupid game somewhere else.

    57

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  • #

    Why do you write this KK? Is it a feel good exercise? Coding to your secret friends?

    42

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    Sapel Mirrup

    Seems KK has inserted a positive comment here viz:
    “He’s a good chap and speaks wisdom. I like what this guy has to say.”

    31

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    Kalm Keith

    Yes, but sadly that comment seems to have been removed at the request of The Captain.

    I just hope Jo doesn’t find out that I supported him in the apparently objectionable content.

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    Kalm Keith

    Maybe we should all go “pinim salla warra” or “fytim salla warra” and relax a bit.
    :-)

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    Kalm Keith

    Gee Aye, you may have missed the string of comments that preceded mine.
    SteveS said things I had thought, Bill complained , Jo apparently has acted and taken down the comments.
    The comment was embarrassing.
    :-) KK

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    Kalm Keith

    In further reply to GA at #42.
    In addition to the removal of the earlier string of comments, the Link to my last comment was redirected, which may make the whole thing appear incoherent.

    The original comment by SteveS in New York seems to have vanished. It is hard to understand that someone who would set out to recreate the “Good Ship Venus” on this blog and also abuse other contributors would have the nerve to take offence at SteveS comment.

    But that favoured “contributor” did complain and did get looked after.

    I think that CV19 is infecting everyone.

    KK

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    Kalm Keith

    To GA.

    Am I in chynah?

    Comments are being “adjusted”

    Gee Aye, you may have missed the string of comments that preceded mine.
    SteveS said things I had thought, Bill complained , Jo apparently has acted and taken down the comments.
    The comment was embarrassing.
    :-) KK

    21

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    Kalm Keith

    Good news.

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    Kalm Keith

    In pidgin, when someone is swimming they appear to be “fighting salt water”.

    Maybe we should all go for a swim in the ocean and cool off a bit.

    11

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    Sapel Mirrup

    Hmm..There are sharks there too. Maybe instead, “nek bilong mi i drai na mi laikim sampela kolwara bilong muli!”

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    Sceptical Sam

    Now we have people declaring it’s the end of the word if we relax our restriction too much too early

    Exaggerating to stress your point is understood PeterS.

    However, you need to consider the question:

    If “we relax our restrictions too much to early” how many additional deaths are you prepared to accept as the offset?

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    Sceptical Sam

    My comment at #52 is addressed to PeterS at #37.

    The program has gone haywire.

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    MudCrab

    If we restrict our restrictions too little too late, how many lives ruined are you prepared to accept as an offset for all the elderly hypertension sufferers and diabetics who’s lives you managed to briefly extend?

    This is the real world, not some petri dish. Real World = As Far As Is Reasonably Practical.

    What is the exit plan?

    When is it going to end?

    11

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    Kalm Keith

    I don’t want to stick my neck in the same water as “muli”.?

    Is muli mullet?

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    Kalm Keith

    #57 relates to #54.

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    Sapel Mirrup

    Muli is citrus fruit – lime or orange for example. Can also say ‘muliwara.’ Sipping such to cool down seemed a more relaxing option at the time. :-)

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    Kalm Keith

    Aaaha!

    Later today I’ll get my neck around some beer. But only after noon.

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    DOC

    I think its getting shorter by the day. Some appear to be tempted by the extermination
    tag while the politicians are getting stressed at having to defend the status quo as the
    numbers disappear effectively to zero. I think eventually, they will demand their epidemiologists
    give them a quicker way out of the lockdowns as the people get increasingly restless and the
    economics for households hits home.

    A lot will depend on the USA governors success or failure in pulling the pin, just as the justification used for the present status quo is, just look at what happened to the Asian tigers when they let up.

    As an aside, many of our regions are virus free, but the restrictions are
    killing them. In my favourite WA south coast town, I am told today just about everything except
    MacDonalds is closed down and supplies are restricted. They are tourist dependent. Farmers
    coming in from a hundred+ kms away, doing a weeks shopping, can’t get any more than the townies
    limit on food supplies. This can’t hold much longer.

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    Comments go haywire when people will less self control say things that need deleting. Destroys the nesting. Slows down bloggers too.

    30

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    Bill In Oz

    Most Most warm countries are ‘developing’ nation with lots of poverty.
    Poor nations cannot afford free Corona 19 tests.
    And poor people cannot afford the tests or the hospital treatment needed by many Wuhan Covid 19 patients.
    Thus most people get sick & recover or die outside the western type health system in such countries. Only the rich and well off can afford such treatment..
    So what statistics get published on the global web sites are largely irrelevant.

    But there is clear evidence that a major catastrophe is unfolding. Here the BBC reports on the disaster unfolding in Ecuador :https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-52329500
    Here is a BBC video report on 4 Latin American nations.
    https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-latin-america-52349439/coronavirus-in-latin-america-how-bad-could-it-get

    Indonesia is a close neighbour and warm tropical tourist destination in normal times. But not now. The ABC reported that Wuhan COVID 19 is widespread with a very high death rate :
    Read here : https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-04-18/indonesia-has-the-highest-number-of-coronavirus-deaths-in-asia/12161638

    A similar situation has developed in the Philippines. This I know from personal experience as my lady is from the Philippines and we worry each day about her family & relations. President Duterte’s solution is an almost complete shut down of life and the economy. with the police & army being told to shoor to kill any one who breaks the lock down.

    Here in Australia we are in far better situation vis a vis life and vis avis this disease.
    I have replied to your abusive comment in the hope that perhaps you will be open to the evidence.

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    Bill In Oz

    This was in reply to a comment by Broadie.
    But it has now been removed because it was abusive.

    00

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    Kalm Keith

    Re #72.

    Jo has already commented on this at #70.

    Please show some self control.

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    Kalm Keith

    And re #72.

    If you are going to write abusive or offensive comments in the vein of “Good Ship Venus” then Jo has every right to delete them.

    KK

    10