JoNova

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Antibody test shows 5% of Spaniards or 2.3 million have contracted the coronavirus

This is not the road to herd immunity

In Spain, after a long battle, a quarter of a million people have tested positive to coronavirus and 27,000 have died.

But Spanish authorities have now done the largest antibody test I am aware of, and it was at least somewhat randomized.  As many as 70,000 people have been blood tested and it was discovered that 5% had antibodies to Coronavirus. That would mean there were about 2.3 million cases of Covid-WuFlu across all of Spain, which is ten times as many cases as officially counted. But it also means 95% of Spaniards are at risk of catching it, and without a lockdown the virus would still spread very quickly. The death rate works out to be about 1.1% of total infections. But there were excess deaths in Spain — above and beyond the normal, and above the known Covid Cases — so that suggests the real death rate is more like 1.3%. Not fun.

That’s possibly why Spain is heading towards zero cases. The combination of infectiousness and the fairly significant death rate means Coronavirus is a hard virus to live with. Even a low level of running virus could fire up in a couple of weeks to 5,000 cases a day.

One third were asymptomatic. Good for them. Another number worth knowing.

Spain

Daily new cases in Spain. Worldmeters.

 Antibody study shows just 5% of Spaniards have contracted the coronavirus

Bordja Andrino, Daniele Grasso, kiko llaneras, Elena Sevillano, El Pais

  • 90% weren’t detected (because Spain isn’t doing enough tests).
  • One out of every three people who tested positive for antibodies was asymptomatic and did not realize they had contracted the virus.
  • 43% lost their sense of smell.

Only 5% of Spaniards have been infected with the coronavirus, according to the preliminary results of a study by the Carlos III public health institute, which took blood samples from nearly 70,000 participants.

The Spanish overall figure of 5% is in line with studies in other European countries that showed a prevalence of 4% to 5%, far below the rate that would provide the population with so-called herd immunity, and which experts place at 60% at the very least.

If the percentage of infected people who eventually die is around 1.1%, as the study suggests, the cost in human lives of herd immunity would be between 200,000 and 300,000, making the method unacceptable.

“Five percent is the equivalent of 2,350,000 cases. If there were around 27,100 deaths, that means that the fatality rate is between 1 and 1.2%,” explains Jesús Molina Cabrillana, an epidemiologist at the Spanish Society of Preventive Medicine, Public Health and Hygiene (Sempsph).

That is in the higher range of the best available estimates from other countries, which talk about 0.5% to 1% of deaths among people who were infected with the coronavirus, known as the infection fatality rate or IFR. In Spain, if we add another 5,900 suspicious but untested cases to the total number of infections, the fatality rate grows to 1.3%.

It’s good that 36,000 households were selected at random, but since 70,000 tests were done this means probably whole households were tested. So it is possible that the study overrepresents families and young people demographically. It may also overrepresent infections since household members are more likely to spread an infection. On the other hand, the test won’t pick up active new infections, so it will  underestimate the infections as well. There is a lag of a week before some of the antibodies form. In the wash, this might be as good as it gets as an estimate.

In Spain, herd immunity might cost 200-300,000 lives.

https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/spain/

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Antibody test shows 5% of Spaniards or 2.3 million have contracted the coronavirus, 7.6 out of 10 based on 35 ratings

76 comments to Antibody test shows 5% of Spaniards or 2.3 million have contracted the coronavirus

  • #
    Curious George

    “In Spain, herd immunity might cost 200-300,000 lives.” Based on incomplete data. We still don’t know how many people are naturally immune to the virus – that is, not getting infected at all (not developing any antibodies after exposure), as opposed to being infected and asymptomatic (and developing antibodies). I don’t blame anybody for not knowing – I don’t know of a humane way to measure that number – but it should be included in calculations as an uncertainty, the same way as an unknown climate sensitivity is present in climate calculations.

    160

    • #
      farmerbraun

      Projections based on incomplete data are symptomatic of the covid discussion:-
      https://www.zerohedge.com/health/focus-covid-19-death-rate

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      • #
        Kalm Keith

        The first SIX “Australian” CV19 deaths were people aged between 70 and 91 years.

        53

        • #

          Curious George: Children may have innate immunity using microRNA/VitD/etc and other defences. But since they are less likely to die, then that obviously won’t affect mortality estimates, though it may slow the rate of spread. Given the way second waves and clusters spring up, and given the other testing for live virus, this is not a gamechanger.

          Farmerbraun Projections based on incomplete data are symptomatic of the covid discussion:-

          Welcome to the world of early stage global pandemics. Hello reality.

          KK: And who cares about old people right?

          47

          • #
            Kalm Keith

            “KK: And who cares about old people right?”

            Jo, are you having a dig at my statement of fact?

            No inference of lack of concern for “old people” but a logic progression would in fact, show that those oldies should be given the greatest emphasis in provision of support.

            The fact that so many older people continued to make up the larger portion of deaths after the first six indicates indifference from government and health public service.

            Was crushing everything really a valid remedy or just a readymade political solution?

            KK

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            • #

              Jo, are you having a dig at my statement of fact?

              KK – I remain baffled as to how the first 6 deaths are relevant. This is off topic at #1, and I will pull this subthread into moderation unless you can explain how it is in any way important to a study of Spain and antibody tests?

              Expect these comments to vanish so we can get back to the topic.

              26

              • #
                Kalm Keith

                Jo,

                My “age comment” was a response to a chart in farmerbraun’s link which itself was a response to Curious George’s post.

                The relevance relates to antibodies being the only measurement criterion for immunity being discussed when there was another recent comment describing the activity of t cells and killer t cells.
                This newly discussed “unmeasured” contribution to immunity in addition to the measurement of antibodies only, may distort the picture.

                The relevance of age is mostly to do with the high prevalence of comorbidity issues rather than the presence of antibodies.

                The whole thing is difficult to unravel and the non specific immunity relating to the killer t cell comment seems an interesting line to investigate.

                KK

                21

            • #
              Bill In Oz

              Keith all the old age care homes throughout Australia were closed down to visitors as an additional step in the lockdown.
              Yet in some aged care homes the virus got in and infected residents anyway.
              The Anglican Newchurch aged care home in western Sydney has seen 18-19 deaths as a result despite the society wide lock down and the aged care center excluding visitors.

              In all instances that I know the virus was taken in by staff working in the centers.
              The reality is that stupidity ( at the very least ) is inevitable.

              Meanwhile Sweden which did not society wide lockdown has seen over 3000 deaths and most of them were in aged care homes.
              [SNIP flame-war stuff. /And a repeat warning that unless people are discussing relevant things (Antibodies, remnember -- this subthread will vanish. - jo]

              14

              • #
                Bill In Oz

                Jo I don’t mind if you pull this subthread.It is the first subthread and it is off topic.
                My own response was written and posted at the same time as yours.

                Spain poses a major example of how deadly this virus can be.
                27,000 people are dead.
                And as this antibody test shows those deaths happened with just 5% of the population being infected by it.
                And there was a ferocious lockdown for 2 months to prevent it’s spread.

                Thus I am completely amazed at folk who complain at Australia’s largely eliminating the virus
                With just 103 deaths .
                I wonder what a similar test would show here in Australia ?
                I suspect it would be a far lower percentage.

                22

    • #
      PeterW

      I believe that George is posing a very relevant question.

      As I read it, the article assumes that there are only two groups. Those who HAVE had WuFlu, and those who COULD get it. It assumes that 100% of those exposed, contract the flu. The alternative – which would appear to be consistent with the very wide range of responses amongst those who test positive , including being completely asymptomatic – is that there is potentially a group that has been exposed and not been infected. Without knowing this and knowing the size of this third group, any population-wide models must remain uncertain.

      Uncertainty is not a crime, but acting as tho we have a degree of certainty that does not exist, is damned foolish. There is no free lunch, and while people will respect an early response based on “we don’t yet know, but it could be bad”, they will not respect one tgat obstinately continues despite their own assessment that the risk is low. The push-back IS happening. I’m seeing it out here.

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      • #

        PeterW, as I said: #1.1.1.1. Doesn’t matter much. The risk of rapid spread is still large:

        1. See second waves. Eg hokkaido and Iran.
        2. Cluster outbreaks — Eg meatworks Victoria.
        3. Innate immunity is largest in the young. I repeat. That won’t affect mortality. It will affect the Ro.

        Virtually all nations (bar Taiwan) didn’t overreact, they were too slow and too late. They underreacted.

        Instead, there was one known risk (we knew what had happened in Wuhan/ Diamond PRincess/Korea/ Iran). There was hardly any data, but a rapidly rising mysterious infection with still unknown long term sequelae, unknown mortality, unknown treatment, unknown cross reactive protection, nations almost all ended up doing exactly what I predicted they would do in mid-Feb, which was being sensible (too late to stop flights though) and using 2,000 year old long proven techniques of quarantine to buy valuable time to slow the wave and get half decent data.

        It was all so obvious.

        Now that lockdowns have bought us that time and some information, we can figure out which actions are the most cost effective from here.

        The lesson for the world is “don’t do what Brazil did”.

        I know we are all data-nerds, and would prefer to make decisions based on good data. But unlike the tail end of a 30 year climate debate that’s been done to death, the Covid debate required a decision based on incomplete info. What was known for 100% sure in February was that every single day that nations delayed quarantine and lockdown meant more deaths and more dollars lost, and in the case of the US and UK tens of thousands of people died who didn’t need to. Trillions of dollars were burnt at the stake of hesitation.

        Waiting for “certainty” was deadly and very expensive.

        22

        • #
          Mike Jonas

          Jo – It seems to me that Curious George and PeterW have raised a serious issue. One that I was going to raise but they had already done so. The Spanish staistics do not seem credible unless there are people who have been exposed to the virus but have not caught it. ie, they have some level of immunity but don’t generate recognisable antibodies. I’m no medic, so I have no idea whether this is even possible, but the statistics do suggest that it happens.

          And if it does happen, then herd immunity might occur at a very much lower level than the experts predict. My feeling is that it is something to investigate. I’ll raise the issue with an expert I know (a medic involved in government Wuhan virus trials in the UK), and get back to you if I get a reply.

          30

          • #
            Mike Jonas

            Hi Jo – here’s the reply (edited to remove personal stuff etc but otherwise intact) re the possibility that a person can reject the virus without generating antibodies:

            it seems odd that if you catch the virus you might not make antibodies. As this is the main mechanism to clear infection, rather than just hold it at bay. It may be that children do indeed catch it less than adults. Perhaps the receptors in the lungs etc are not as efficient at trapping the coronavirus?
            In which case, let’s get all the kids back to school :-)
            Also, the findings are based only on the finger prick test, which is pretty unreliable. They say that the peak time to do this is day 30, and a lot of these people would’ve had the infection a lot less than 30 days. The formal venous blood sampling apparently is better at picking up longer ago infections.
            It will be fascinating with the benefit of the retrospectoscope to see if kids are less infected. If this was the case, perhaps they could harness this knowledge and use it for a vaccine? Time will tell.
            I look forward to hearing the next stage of the results.

            This was my original question:

            There is this study from Spain [link] in which they find that only 5% of the population has been exposed to the virus.

            The finding is based on finding antibodies, but they say “either children did not get the disease as often as adults, or else their bodies did not generate antibodies”. But if children can reject the virus without generating antibodies, surely adults might be able to?

            And that would mean that the 5% figure could be way out.

            Any ideas?

            20

            • #

              Mike, it’s possible that some people may beat the virus so fast with innate immunity that they don’t have time to develop an antibody response. But it’s also possible that they develop antibodies even though it isn’t the main defence. It would be unusual for the mechanism to be actively suppressed.

              The live virus testing in places like Austria and Iceland with RNA testing suggests an upper limit of 4 x known official confirmed cases, which may be higher in the US because of inadequate testing.

              So given that it’s possible, but there is no data to support it, how do use that to craft public policy? We already suspect that children don’t seem to be large spreaders (which is very unusual) and that schools pose a lower risk. That doesn’t change the threat level to adults or the risk of spread among adults.

              So we come back to what we do have data on (again). We look at cluster outbreaks (see meatworks = virulent).

              Given that many countries are tracking to zero, and the huge cost of outbreaks is punishing, should we switch strategies when we know that only 5% of the population *might* be immune and aim for herd immunity given we don’t know if it is possible and we don’t know if anyone fights this disease without leaving an antibody trace.

              Yes, it “might” be true. But we might be chasing rainbows.

              The Herd Immunity strategy at this point is known to be grossly expensive in lives (even if some think that old folks are expendable).

              Do we pursue the dangerous strategy with unknown benefits based on speculative possibles with no data?

              10

        • #
          Whalehunt Fun

          What was definitely known was that the mortality was far less than 10% and predominantly took the non-productive. My quality of life has been significantly degraded due to damage to the economy whereas those that have been saved contribute little or a nett negative to the economy that supports me. I vote let her rip.

          13

        • #
          PeterW

          Jo…. I’m a layman, so I’m going to ask your patience.
          You mention the Ruby Princess as a classic example of how not to manage an outbreak, yet a brief scan of the media shows that only about 20% of the passengers and crew were infected. If that is true, then it strongly suggests that there is some other factor limiting infection. The less competent the response on ship-board was, the more probable that this is the case. I won’t claim to be more than speculating WRT what that factor or factors may be, but the most obvious candidates are a resistant sector of the population, or simple and voluntary distancing by scared people.

          Secondly, I must take you to task for misrepresenting what I said. To reiterate, a strong response when facing an unknown threat is reasonable and respected. However, to stubbornly maintain that level of response when the population is doing their own observations and finding that the threat is not as big as claimed…… that is what brings the response into disrepute.
          I say this because I am an officer in an emergency service. Very few people mind being called out to an incident when the scale of threat is unknown. But they start to mind very quickly if you keep them from their homes and jobs if it becomes obvious that the response is beyond that required. Flexibility is the key to good leadership, not obduracy.

          51

          • #

            PeterW, all a fair line of questioning.

            We are talking about the Diamond PRincess. (DP). I haven’t said much about the Ruby Princess.

            With the DP, in a mere four weeks 1 infected man spread the disease to 712 people– and half of that time was in quarantine conditions.

            That the rest of the ship didn’t get sick was likely just a matter of time. The Ro was as high as 11 at the peak onboard. Shocking. Most of those infections were in the first two weeks, and after the quarantine it was mainly people in the same cabin and staff who caught it. So the quarantine was useful, but staff needed better training.

            Death rate was 2% — average age was 58. These were not young, but not nursing home candidates either.

            Since then we’ve learnt that this disease causes strokes in people in their 30s. We also know that some people develop chronic awful infections that last 3 months (or who knows — longer?), even though most people don’t.

            I understand people are weary of the lockdowns, and they are expensive, so I’m sympathetic and wish the Rulers would map out a better explanation. The last few weeks of lockdown are the hardest but potentially incredibly good value economically. They should be selling the end point — the golden goal of zero virus where no one needs tracking or vaccines and life can be normal again apart from overseas travel to the third world, and the US UK and Sweden. (Sorry to our friends in those lands). V shaped economic recovery is only going to happen in zero-virus world. Not in recurring high risk outbreak world.

            There is a huge difference between 0 and 1 virus case. When we are at zero community transmission all the big events can open up again. (As long as borders stay closed to risky countries).

            20

  • #
    Roger

    It’s not just about Antibodies to show herd immunity but also about different types of T cells.
    Helper T-cells stimulate B-cells to make antibodies and help killer cells develop. Killer T-cells directly kill cells that have already been infected. So Antibodies alone are not a reliable means of establishing the level of Herd Immunity in a population.

    Just published research states that many of us (appear to) have T-cells from previous colds and viruses which are able to recognise and kill Covid-19 despite never having been exposed to it – they don’t show up as antibodies to Covid-19. That could explain why many are asymptomatic or resistant. That could explain why when my daughter and then my wife had Covid-19 in late February I was and remain unaffected by it.

    Professor Karol Sikora of WHO said that the low level of antibodies found is because we have far more inherent or acquired immunity from past Colds and viruses than had been estimated by those predicting the spread and effect of the virus. An immunity (defence through T-cells) which does not show as antibodies produced by B-Cells.

    A paper, Out in Cell, a leading scientific magazine in the last few days has given an explanation of this low antibody range. “The reason is that there are other immune mechanisms as we thought including T lymphocytes. T lymphocytes are two types, CD4 and CD8 cells and in the cell paper it was clear that everybody that has been infected had CD4 cells that were positive – they had got the memory of the virus in them

    “Shane Crotty, from the Center for Infectious Disease and Vaccine Research at the La Jolla Institute for Immunology in California, spoke to Reuters and said: “The types of immune responses targeted by many candidate vaccines are now shown to be the types of immune responses seen in COVID-19 cases that successfully recovered from the disease.”

    Professor Crotty’s team reported that some people who never had COVID-19 had T cells which could attack the virus. This suggests that past exposure to other viruses including the common cold had somehow primed their T cells to recognise and attack this new COVID-19. “That might influence their susceptibility to COVID-19 disease,” said Professor Crotty. ”

    I stumbled across this in the article below a few days ago in an article and then researched it further
    https://www.express.co.uk/life-style/health/1285960/coronavirus-update-latest-cases-t-cells-vaccine-antibody-test

    140

    • #
      Kalm Keith

      Thanks Roger,

      An important point about accumulated immunity.

      I had brought this up before when I wondered if “playing in the dirt” as a kid would give non specific or generalised benefit with later challenges.

      The CV19 thing is Multifactorial and each breeding ground for the virus is different, and that ranges from nation sized incubators down to each individual. So many variables.

      The worry for me has been that the response might be poorly directed and be more political than medical.

      KK

      60

      • #
        Roger

        Couldn’t agree more – this was highlighted in a study of British and Australian troops fighting in the jungle during the Malayan communist insurgency during the 1950s. The Brits had far less jungle diseases than the Aussies and the study found that the Brits, having grown up in far less hygienic conditions than the Aussies, had much stronger immune systems and so were better able to resist / fight off jungle diseases.

        We should be researching how to strengthen immune systems as we know that antibiotic resistant bacteria are a serious danger to mankind – but there’s no profit for Big Pharma in that ……

        60

        • #
          Kalm Keith

          Reprint.

          Kalm Keith
          March 24, 2020 at 4:59 am
          I like the direction of your comments Stephen.

          Wish there was an alternative to the term “herd immunity” as it seems to invoke aggro and or extension/interpretation of the meaning.

          As a child I experienced contact with nature and experienced the Vomits, the Runs and pimples, along with grazed knees and elbows, bee stings and bully ant bites.

          My imagination gives me a vision of an immune system that is, as a result of these adventures, more likely to cope with strange new challenges than it otherwise might have been.

          Meanwhile in the modern pure pristine world we have children whose systems have been so protected that they can’t even eat peanuts without a violent reaction.

          The world is a complicated place and is made more so by the intervention of politicians following the guide of university graduates with PhDs in Science Communication rather than science itself.

          We have too many layers of confusion in an already confused world. Let’s keep it simple and Honest.

          KK

          00

    • #
      Curious George

      As Professor Karol Sikora of WHO noted, we have far more inherent or acquired immunity. Actually so much that we were 100% immune to the virus until it mutated (maybe) in late 2019.

      42

    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Interesting perspective.
      ButI would be a lot more trusting of this scientist if he was NOT associated with the WHO.
      WHO functionaries stuffed up early on in January.
      And my trust was destroyed.

      34

      • #
        Roger

        Bill,
        I’d agree with you if other scientists not associated with WHO were not finding and saying the same thing.

        42

    • #
      Bulldust

      This is also covered in the later part of the latest MedCram video:

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

      Also, it makes me wonder how many of the positive tests for antibodies are recognising other coronavirus antibodies and not the CCP virus ones. On the plus side that might mean greater resistance to the disease for those that have the relevant T cells, but also means lower CCP virus infection rate than measured in Spain.

      31

  • #
    MrGrimNasty

    I think you’ve rather neatly exposed the problem with your own extremely dangerous virus theory and endorsement of lockdowns as effective.

    Clearly no government that believed the original justification for the lockdown policy was sound, would entertain relaxing it, if 95% of the population was still at high risk!

    Undoubtedly a repost but it is well worth reading this and all the comments.

    https://judithcurry.com/2020/05/10/why-herd-immunity-to-covid-19-is-reached-much-earlier-than-thought/

    The antibody rate in London is 17% (rest of UK 5%) – and the emergency has abated almost there alone, seems to be an interesting number/break point that keeps cropping up. Add 17% to 40-60% that might not be susceptible anyway……..

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    • #
      Kalm Keith

      The link is a bit long and dense, hard going but may be related to the effect described above in Rogers post.

      Hope it’s the good news we’ve been waiting for.

      22

      • #

        I think you’ve rather neatly exposed the problem with your own extremely dangerous virus theory and endorsement of lockdowns as effective.

        MrGrim, try to be logical. With respect, did those 27,000 Spaniards not die? The lockdown began on March 14 and slowed the exponential growth, as I predicted it would, 14 days later on March 28.

        Now that there is much less virus circulating and we know more about how it spreads and how to treat it, and how to protect the most vulnerable, obviously Spain can lift parts of their very severe lockdown while keeping the Ro below 1. As long as they do that, the virus will still go to zero. Though they can’t let in flights from the US or Brazil etc and other countries with incompetent or crippled and sabotaged management that have uncontrolled viral spread.

        As I predicted there are so many advantages to stopping the virus hard fast and early that even slow late hot target nations would get there eventually, as sadly Britain has been dragged to do.

        PS: Who’s the dangerous one here. The one who would have stopped this spreading in February for the bargain price of quarantined flights or the one saying it’s OK for 300,000 Spaniards to die?

        PPS: But thanks for drawing my attention to how much the Spanish graph supports everything I predicted. I’ll add a note to the post. Appreciate that.

        43

        • #
          Kalm Keith

          No,

          One of the big issues for me has been the method applied in deciding what to do.

          What happens in Spain, Italy and New York is far different from what should have been done in Australia.

          a. Lock down for one week max to get things organised.

          b. Isolate and protect Nursing homes.

          c. Jump on and isolate any breakouts.

          The train wreck created by the “crushing” still waits to be measured and judged.

          Statements like; “we saved a million lives” are Not scientific.

          We really did lose 101 to this virus. Fact.

          What will the crushing cost. I don’t like to imagine.

          KK

          71

    • #
      WXcycles

      I think you’ve rather neatly exposed the problem with your own extremely dangerous virus theory and endorsement of lockdowns as effective.

      Because having no lockdown isn’t dangerous, and having no lockdown is far more effective than having one, right?

      Tell it to Italy … and prepare to be ignored.

      23

  • #
    William Astley

    We already know why some people are getting serious covid symptoms and others are not. We know the controlling variable.

    Regardless of sex or age, ‘Vitamin’ D deficient people are 20 times more likely to die or have serious covid virus symptoms, than ‘Vitamin’ D normal people.

    Three independent studies confirm that Covid Serious is caused by ‘Vitamin’ D deficiency.

    We know 42% of the US general population (same definition for deficient and normal) and 82% of the US Black population is Vitamin D deficient.

    We know US blacks and UK blacks are more than twice as likely to die from Covid as white people.

    So logically we should change the odds before going to fight with the virus, rather than just count how many people die.

    Patterns of COVID-19 Mortality and Vitamin D: An Indonesian Study

    https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3585561

    Vitamin D Insufficient Patients 12.55 times more likely to die

    Vitamin D Deficient Patients 19.12 times more likely to die

    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-52574931

    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-52492662

    Coronavirus: Black African deaths three times higher than white Britons – study

    Prevalence and correlates of vitamin D deficiency in US adults.
    https://tahomaclinic.com/Private/Articles4/WellMan/Forrest%202011%20-%20Prevalence%20and%20correlates%20of%20vitamin%20D%20deficiency%20in%20US%20adults.pdf

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    • #
      Curious George

      “Vitamin D Deficient Patients 19.12 times more likely to die.”
      19.12, not 19.11. A remarkable accuracy.

      30

      • #
        William Astley

        I totally agree. It does not matter whether the increased Covid virus death rate due to ‘Vitamin’ D deficiency is 19.12 or 19.11. The level in the study set for ‘Vitamin’ D normal is too low. Correcting the population to Vitamin D normal requires 4000 UI/day per person. A glass of milk in the US has added Vitamin D of approx. 100 UI/glass.

        And it gets better…

        48% of the US population is Magnesium deficient.

        https://openheart.bmj.com/content/5/1/e000668

        So as we all ‘know’ Vitamin D supplements should be taken with magnesium citrate (300 mg/day) as the body does not function correctly because of magnesium deficiency.

        And in addition to reducing the death rate due to covid by a factor 20, correct the population’s vitamin D deficiency, reduces the incidence of type 2 diabetes by more 50% and reduce the incidences of most common cancers by a similar amount.

        So it is all good. If we knew about it and acted on it.

        https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960076015300091?via%3Dihub

        Incidence rate of type 2 diabetes is >50% lower in Grassroots Health cohort with median serum 25–hydroxyvitamin D of 41 ng/ml than in NHANES cohort with median of 22 ng/ml

        40

        • #

          William, I’ve posted on that interesting Indonesian study, and on Vitamin D, but caution that cause and effect are far from proven with the incredibly high RR in that retrospective study. Indeed, it’s almost “too high”.

          See:
          Indonesian study: Low Vitamin D patients ten times more likely to die of Coronavirus


          Perhaps solve the other pandemic: Vitamin D deficiency — to help beat Coronavirus?

          Vit D obviously, no doubt about it, is very useful, but it’s also possible that those who get the severe reaction burn through their Vit D in the process of the ARDS type response. The ARDS reaction may cause low Vitamin D.

          The Indonesian study was not prospective, it doesn’t show cause and effect — we don’t know who had high D levels before infection. We only know that in the late stages a low D level is associated with mortality. We also know (sadly) that high doses in the late stage are not able to compensate.

          Low D levels are common in ICU’s.
          But high supplements of late stage D don’t solve the problem.

          ALSO
          The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHBLI)
          performed a randomized controlled trial evaluating the role of high dose vitamin D (single dose of 540,000 IU of vitamin D3) in critically ill patients who were vitamin D deficient (25-hydroxyvitamin D level <  50 nmol/l) [17], the study failed to demonstrate any benefit from high dose vitamin D

          Vit D is essential, I have taken 1000IU myself in winter for 20 years, but it’s not a magic bullet.

          42

  • #
    AZ1971

    The Covid-19 death total is garbage for less offensive reasons than this, but this is indicative of what’s happening in the US and begs the question, “Why?”:
    https://www.rt.com/usa/489409-washington-gunshot-deaths-coronavirus/

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      Bill In Oz

      Ahhh yes, the USA is something else again – NOT very norma at all.
      And it’s always a conspiracy !
      Sigh…

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        AZ1971.

        The Covid death total in major epicentres is almost certain to be an underestimate as the repeat wildly high excess deaths graphs show.

        For every gunshot death included there are 100 people who had a stroke or heart attack who didn’t even know they were infected.

        As for gunshot victims — without an autopsy, who knows? Did they get shot in the knee then died of a stroke? We have no idea from that story.

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    Ross

    This discussion with Prof Gupta from Oxford University is worth watching, for an alternative view to Ferguson & co. She mentions the anti body tests, in amongst it all.

    https://off-guardian.org/2020/05/23/watch-prof-sunetra-gupta-on-lockdowntv/

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      Bill In Oz

      And 37,048 as of this morning,
      DEAD Britains are wrong.
      Go away all you dead folk !
      Sarc/

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        Bill In Oz

        And of course the UK did a late, crazy lock down without any quarantine.
        One wonders at the British government’s lack of common sense.

        I also notice that she does not look at Australia in her talk.
        Ummmm ?

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        Kalm Keith

        Jo.

        Britain is a country.

        Britons are people who inhabit Britain.

        Sorry for the confusion.

        KK

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          Bill In Oz

          No that was my mistake.
          But as of today there are still 34,048 dead Britons
          Diagnosed as dead from Covid 19
          And given the curious omissions in those figures,
          That is certainly a gross under statement.

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    Kevin a

    ” but had many other health complications and wasn’t tested.”

    Coronavirus Australia live updates: Man, 30, dies in Central Queensland from virus
    A 30-year-old man from a small town with no known coronavirus cases has become the youngest person in Australia to die after contracting the virus.

    The man from Blackwater tested positive after he was found unresponsive in his home at 4.30pm yesterday. He could not be revived and was declared deceased at the scene.
    https://www.news.com.au/world/coronavirus/australia/coronavirus-australia-live-updates-concerning-aussie-virus-figure/live-coverage/aaf859bf3ed002768c344f3981b2d956

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    Kevin a

    French Intelligence Warned Of ‘Catastrophic Leak’ From Wuhan Lab
    Eleven years before the joint construction of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, French intelligence services warned Paris that China’s reputation for poor bio-security could lead to a ‘catastrophic leak,’ according to the Daily Mail.

    In 2004, the EU’s chief brexit negotiator, Michael Barnier, ignored those warnings – signing off on the lab’s construction when he was the French foreign minister.
    According to the report, French intel also warned that Paris could lose control of the facility, and that Beijing could even use it to make biowarfare weapons. And in 2015, as the laboratory prepared to open, those concerns were realized after the French architects of the project said the CCP had shut them out. In fact, 50 French scientists were supposed to help the Chinese run the laboratory properly, but never ended up going.
    https://www.zerohedge.com/health/french-intelligence-warned-catastrophic-leak-wuhan-lab

    ‘Prepare for worst-case scenario’: China ramps up military amid rising global tensions
    China’s leader has told its military to step up its preparedness for armed combat, as relations with Australia and the US deteriorate.
    https://www.news.com.au/technology/innovation/military/prepare-for-worstcase-scenario-china-ramps-up-military-amid-rising-global-tensions/news-story/8f16a5da11a10ee66186146a0dcdb946

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    WXcycles

    Highest continental daily percent spread of Active Cases:

    South America = 7.3% daily spread
    India = 7.1% daily spread
    Africa = 5.5% daily spread
    Asia = 5.3%
    Oceania = 3.0% daily spread (all Australia with 15 new cases yesterday)
    Europe = 2.1% daily spread
    North America = 2.0% daily spread

    Worldometer needs another table named “Middle East”, as it’s currently all being lumped into “Asia”. The situation is not improving much in the Arab states and Iran. Still ~12% spreading in Iraq but somehow their cases ‘recover’ at a miraculous rate. Same for Iran.

    BRAZIL – As expected will get to the first of June with about half a million total cases.

    “ … The balance of the Ministry of Health of this Tuesday (26) informs 24,512 dead and 391,222 cases. Brazil is the second country in the world with the highest number of confirmed cases of the disease, behind the United States. See here how many cases and deaths there are in your city. Of the 20 cities with the highest mortality, 16 are in the North and four in the Northeast. …”

    https://g1.globo.com/bemestar/coronavirus/noticia/2020/05/26/casos-de-coronavirus-e-numero-de-mortes-no-brasil-em-26-de-maio.ghtml

    Translate: https://translate.google.com/

    Source: https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/brazil/

    So the hottest and most humid parts of Brazil consistently have much higher levels of spread.

    NICARAGUA
    Total cases = 759
    New cases = 480
    Active = 354
    Recovered = 370
    Daily spreading = 135.6% … someone did some tests yesterday and found a whole lot of the virus present.

    Nicaragua finds 480 new cases today but reports just 354 active? … Interesting math.

    Bit of a strange situation in global trends at present. The global daily new cases totals are rising. I expected this as developed world infections take off during June. But daily deaths are falling at the same time for some unexplained reason. And the daily active case totals are not rising with the increased new cases because strangely the recoveries strongly increased also.

    If that’s to be believed it means some treatment (or something else) is gradually dropping daily deaths from COVID-19, and also produces faster recoveries. So either a new treatment is working (very well), or a new more moderate strain is spreading faster. Or alternatively, and much more likely, many countries are defining away and downplaying the deaths plus declaring recoveries much sooner than prior. Which would be a big mistake.

    The daily new cases trend began a slow rise around the 18th of April and this rise increased a bit faster since the first week of May.

    And while that occurred, the percent of active cases which died, stabilized at ~12% globally.

    https://i.ibb.co/3zTBvgr/12-percent-of-active-cases-die-globally.png

    Given there’s a lag of about 2.5 weeks behind the new cases for people to die we should be seeing a steady rise in daily deaths occurring right now. But instead the opposite is occurring, the daily deaths have consistently gone down, and more quickly very recently.

    So either a much less lethal virus is taking over, or a miracle-cure is taking effect, but no one is talking about it, or else COVID-19 deaths are being defined away, or else more of them are just not being counted any longer, as more and more of them are occurring outside of the hospital system, and just get buried as ‘miscellaneous’ dead people.

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      WX, I too have noticed that the long lag in the peak of deaths (EG 1 month in South Korea and the Diamond Princess) is shortening dramatically (Eg Spain and ITaly).

      I expect that this must be medical experts essentially publishing advice, and phoning each other around the world to improving treatments, triage, and saving lives.

      But yes, it could be a “nicer mutant” virus. (We sure hope).

      It also could be that with inadequate testing in poorer nations that there are many dying who are not diagnosed. That would just mean that we will only see the real death rate in the excess deaths graph later (assuming the country is not so poor that they don’t even keep those numbers accurately).

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      Bill In Oz

      Thanks WXC. The really interesting thing about Brazil is that Covid 19 is hitting the Equatorial northern part of the country.
      So temperature clearly makes no difference.

      I wonder whether Panama, El Salvador, Guatamala etc in Central America have the same pattern as Nicaragua

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      • #

        Bill temperature may still matter, but humidity may have an opposing effect.

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          Bill In Oz

          Jo, I’ve been thinking about your reply.
          I suggest that we need to examine a country or area which has a hot dry climate ( low humidity )
          To see if such climatic conditions limit the spread of this virus.

          New Mexico is one such place.
          Worldmeters give these statistics for New Mexico
          Total infections 7130
          Deaths 325
          Population ~ 2.2 million people
          From memory New Mexico is a Republican Party state and has not implemented . a very tight lockdown or quarantine.
          ( I’m open to correction of this info. I do not keep a close eye on USA state politics)

          But if a hot & dry place like New Mexico can have such a high infection count and high death count,
          I suspect that humidity has little impact.

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          • #

            New Mexico has death rate of 15 per 100,000 while the USA death rate is 30 per 100,000. Looks like they are doing fine.

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              Bill In Oz

              Richard New Mexico, compared to Australia is doing crap.
              Australia has 103 deaths total for 23.5 million people.
              New Mexico has 325 deaths for 2.2 million.

              But my point was more about the fact that these 325 deaths had happened in a HOT & DRY climate.
              There are idiots saying that this virus loses it’s potency in the Summer heat.
              Well what went wrong in hot dry New Mexico ?
              Can anyone explain that simple fact for me.

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    MudCrab

    Imperial College stuff.

    The study claims that 5% of Spain may be infected. Using that number against the deaths we get back to this 1.1% deaths per infection.

    However the actual death rate as a factor of total population is 0.058%, or about 19 times lower.

    So… Where is the missing heat spot? Why have not these selfish people not died yet like the models predict?

    The assumption from this study is that while 5% already have it, the other 95% wont, and once they do 1.1% (or whatever) will then die.

    The elephant in the room here is that not only did 95% of the sample NOT have the virus, and the second elephant is that the ratio of ‘official’ to ‘study’ infections is out by over 8 to 1.

    What is this suggesting? That 95% of the population are yet to get it and then die? Or that 95% have not gotten it, have not died and, given the actual death rate as a factor of total population is only 0.058%, are probably very unlikely to do. Worldmeter, which shows no new deaths in Spain, also supports this.

    The suggestion here is rather than ‘OMG OMG WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE WILL NO ONE THINK OF THE CHILDREN’ but instead that outside of its target audience the virus is reluctant to spread and only shows symptoms in about 1 in 8 cases.

    Let us, in context, also discuss Sweden. Now as we know, Sweden did everything wrong and refused to do the correct thing to restrict spread of virus. Hence, by not social isolating we can make the assumption that the virus had the perfect opportunity to spread to its little virus heart’s content. By extension it could have had a crack at the entire population of 10million and we should expect, using the 1% death rate as our guild, as about 100,000 dead.

    Right?

    Nope. 4125 dead or 409 per million population.

    (also, New Deaths in Sweden = Zero)

    So, there is a clear argument that not only is that Social Lockdown no longer Reasonably Practical (and Reasonably Practical is how the legal system judge industrial safety in the real world so I am COMPLETELY JUSTIFIED in using it within my arguments thank you very much), but that in retrospect Social Lockdown was never Reasonably Practical in the first place.

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Mudcrab ” https://www.facebook.com/weatherzone/
      Simple mate. Those countries did a society wide lockdown and quarantine of all travelers.

      The Ferguson ‘model’ said :
      “IF YOU DO NOTHING< THIS IS WHAT WILL HAPPEN"

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      Whalehunt Fun

      Exactly. If you consider the people who had the worst reaction, 100% of them died. Extrapolating from this, WE ARE ALL DOOMED. But we ain’t. Some of us are still alive. Some of us don’t catch it. A whole bunch of poppy cock or puppy poop or something.

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      PeterW

      Muddy…
      I may have missed it in your post, but the argument that the Swedes have done “nothing” is incorrect. They have encouraged -and mostly practiced – voluntary distancing.

      The claim that there are only two alternatives – Lockdown or Nothing – should be considered Prima-face evidence that the claimant does not understand the subject. People can and will take their own precautions when convinced it is necessary. The discussion should then become the degree to which Lockdown provides ADDITIONAL protection over Voluntary Distancing, and what the cost of that ADDITIONAL protection is.

      Academics need to bear in mind that as long as they promote Government-level response, they are promoting passivity and lack of self-response by the community. Self-response can be implemented by vulnerable people faster than government….. a nursing home can lock its doors without having to consider tge national economy. A government justifying its lack of action by arguing that “it’s not that bad yet” is telling the whole population that we don’t have to take action. A government justifying its failure to stock up on masks tends to tell people that masks aren’t necessary, when (as Jo likes to point out), they are.

      Government is a very blunt instrument.

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    Whalehunt Fun

    So a loss of 1.3% max is all we are talking about. A hit to the population of 1.3% that is mainly elderly and sick is no hit to the economy. A very large proportion of the dead are functionally non-productive economic units at their current stage of life or health. By dying they effectively bring forward the cost that would eventually have occurred when they would have died later but reduce the length of time they are non-productive consumers of economic output. That is their death is a nett positive for the economy. The Shutdown has a massive hit to the economy. Vastly more than one percent. You ask if 300000 deaths is acceptable. Not only acceptable, economically desirable. Extremely desirable. Sweden is definitely right and all the weepy handwringers are an economic disaster. Whoever suggested a lockdown to the government should be removed from all advisory positions. The death and misery that this economic disaster will cause has been created by their advice. They are responsible.

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      Whalehunt, you mean their death is a net positive for the your economy.

      Lucky we don’t live in that kind of civilization or you might find yourself on someone elses “net benefit if he’s dead” list.

      You are just trolling us for a reaction aren’t you?

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        Jo I read a study this week, sorry don’t have a link, that showed a high proportion of deaths in Sweden were of people not expected to live more than a few months. I think one of the problems with our counts of deaths are that we are saying people died due to the virus that were dying anyway. Thus the total count is being exaggerated. I know there is an incentive here in the USA to list cause of death in hospital as due to the virus because payments are higher. There was a case recently of a coroner complaining that a death was attributed to the virus when the deceased had a blood alcohol of .5% which is obviously alcohol poisoning.

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          Richard, corruption and bias is everywhere for sure. That’s why I look at Excess Deaths. That’s all causes of mortality bundled together. As long as we think the actual body count is not being scammed, and there are names for each body, this is the raw data as raw as it gets. It’s not adjusted.

          You might be surprised to find that in some places there is no excess death at all (Countries which acted so quickly they kept infections low), and other — due to lockdown — there’s even a reduction in deaths. But in the capital cities where there has been a significant infection there has been a large rise in deaths, far above the norms for this time of year, far above any flu spike seen, and also far in excess of normal-deaths plus Covid Deaths.

          That’s why it’s likely that in big cities, the deaths from Covid are worse than official estimates. Covid causes clotting which leads to heart attacks and strokes and pulmonary embolism. Some people don’t even realize they have Covid, but they can die of a heart attack that wouldn’t have happened if they weren’t infected.

          See the graphs here: http://joannenova.com.au/2020/04/new-york-like-mass-casualty-event-coronavirus-and-other-deaths-up-three-fold/
          http://joannenova.com.au/2020/04/death-tolls-could-be-60-higher-than-official-numbers-all-cause-mortality-is-at-record-highs/

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          PeterW

          Richard.

          I can’t cite the source, but I recently heard the claim that a disproportionate percentage of Swedish victims were in the ethnic Somali community…… a community that is less likely to spend time outdoors than the native Swedes, and genetically less able to generate VitD from sunlight when they do.

          The discussion noted the association between this factor (whether VitD is THE factor or a proxy for other sun-exposure benefits is not known) and variable rates of WuFlu infection in many places. Northern Italy has amongst the lowest population levels of VitD in Europe and is notorious for its Flu epidemics. A number of the hot-spots appear to be highly urbanised areas in which concentrations of what appear to be particularly vulnerable racial groups coincide with very low levels of outdoor activity. Proxy or not, the correlation between VitD deficiency and race in New York is quite large.

          Meanwhile, places like Australia and NZ, that are just coming out of a long, sunny summer and lack large inner-urban enclaves of vulnerable racial groups, have low incidence…… and we are expected to give all the credit to Lockdown? Maybe the WuFlu is just behaving like other flus.

          What is scary is the thought that we are just entering our normal flu season. If the WuFlu Ramos up because conditions change, you can be certain that those who see Lockdown as the universal answer, will want more of it.

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      Kalm Keith

      Whalehunt, we can see where you’re coming from.

      The question is, how did you get out.

      KK

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    ImranCan

    Jo – I think you have this the wrong way around. Mathematically the mortality works out at 1.1% but in actuality it is lower, not higher. Three points:
    1) those excess deaths that were not recorded as being Covid related are related to people not going to hospital. Ie. Due to the lockdown, not the virus. We have same observation in the UK. Anyone even suspected of being Covid gets marked as Covid, so if anything the Covid numbers are over-estimated, not the other way round.
    2) children and maybe others with innate immunity are not being counted as positive antibody tests because they haven’t developed any, even though they may have been exposed. So the spread is being underestimated.
    3) the care home distribution issue heavily skews the result. If you have a small subset of the population with high infection rate and deaths then you can’t count those deaths in trying to work out the average mortality. You will overestimate it.

    If you take these into account the average mortality drops a lot 0.5 to 0.7 range.

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      Bill In Oz

      I think it is the high natural level of melatonin production in children’s bodies
      Which helps them be ‘immune’ to Covid 19.

      But melatonin is a cheap over the counter supplement which could be given to everyone to the same effect.

      Or if one wants to be picky, perhaps a study should be done in an aged care home with residents given melatonin each night.
      As well as beating back the virus it would also help them sleep far better.

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    • #

      Imran,

      I have said in posts that the excess deaths might be people not going to hospital. But I also said (and repeat here) that it’s significant that the worst excess deaths were also in the same areas with the worst coronavirus clusters.

      In areas with lockdowns but not major outbreaks, the mortality rate is often below normal, around 90% (many US states).

      So the reduction in influenza and work and car related accidents is about 10% thanks to lockdown. Therefore excess deaths may be even higher than a pure comparison to “last years” normal rate implies.

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    PeterW

    The economic argument is a difficult one. We don’t LIKE putting things before people, but are we? Really?….

    That economy that we might dismiss as being less important than lives, is what actually PAYS to keep people alive and healthy. We aren’t actually trading lives for economy. We are trading LIVES FOR LIVES.

    Try motor vehicle fatalities as an example. Almost all motor vehicle accidents at 20kph or below are survivable. Even by pedestrians – the New Zealanders based their speed limit around school buses on this research. If we lowered our road speed limit to 20kph, we might save roughly 1000 lives per annum. Surely it would be worth it…. if we still believed in the Free Lunch.
    Unfortunately, there are costs. Transport becomes much more costly, and that depresses the economy. Depressed economy means less tax, and what do we think pays for hospitals and health systems? Fresh food becomes more expensive, so the poor are forced into less healthy diets. Do I go on?

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    PeterW

    The economic argument is a difficult one. We don’t LIKE putting things before people, but are we? Really?….

    That economy that we might dismiss as being less important than lives, is what actually PAYS to keep people alive and healthy. We aren’t actually trading lives for economy. We are trading LIVES FOR LIVES.

    Try motor vehicle fatalities as an example. Almost all motor vehicle accidents at 20kph or below are survivable. Even by pedestrians – the New Zealanders based their speed limit around school buses on this research. If we lowered our road speed limit to 20kph, we might save roughly 1000 lives per annum. Surely it would be worth it…. if we still believed in the Free Lunch.
    Unfortunately, there are costs. Transport becomes much more costly, and that depresses the economy. Depressed economy means less tax, and what do we think pays for hospitals and health systems? Fresh food becomes more expensive, so the poor are forced into less healthy diets. Do I go on?

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      PeterW

      Plus I must observe that while people may sometimes behave very like sheep, there are limits to the degree that they respond well to being fenced in and managed.

      A century of socialism should be enough of an experiment to show that treating people like sheep generally creates far more problems than letting them make as many of their own decisions as possible.

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      PeterW

      Plus I must observe that while people may sometimes behave very like sheep, there are limits to the degree that they respond well to being fenced in and managed.

      A century of socialism should be enough of an experiment to show that treating people like sheep generally creates far more problems than letting them make as many of their own decisions as possible.

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    PeterW

    The economic argument is a difficult one. We don’t LIKE putting things before people, but are we? Really?….

    That economy that we might dismiss as being less important than lives, is what actually PAYS to keep people alive and healthy. We aren’t actually trading lives for economy. We are trading LIVES FOR LIVES.

    Try motor vehicle fatalities as an example. Almost all motor vehicle accidents at 20kph or below are survivable. Even by pedestrians – the New Zealanders based their speed limit around school buses on this research. If we lowered our road speed limit to 20kph, we might save roughly 1000 lives per annum. Surely it would be worth it…. if we still believed in the Free Lunch.
    Unfortunately, there are costs. Transport becomes much more costly, and that depresses the economy. Depressed economy means less tax, and what do we think pays for hospitals and health systems? Fresh food becomes more expensive, so the poor are forced into less healthy diets. Do I go on?

    [Sorry PeterW, this was caught by the spam filter. I did not find it til today. ]ED

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    cedarhill

    Very interesting but the central opinion seems to be addressed in this Washington Times (US) opinion piece “You’re not going to die from COVID-19″

    https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/may/25/you-are-not-going-to-die-from-covid-19/

    Which introduces, to some, the concept of “net lives”. Mortality is difficult for most, but at least there’s a real-world factual number that can be used — all cause mortality which avoids crawling around in the weeds and allows one to focus on assessing what policies governments should deploy.

    Perhaps there will be an accurate assessment using net lives analysis so that another world wide hysteria-panic is avoided along with all the false science we’ve been subjected ranging from masking, hoping viruses respect 6 feet seperation, and that metering people into and out of stores defeats a virus.

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      Kalm Keith

      The article has a good perspective: step back and thoroughly assess the whole situation.

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    cedarhill

    For those that speak fondly of R and R0, this analysis by a Prof. of Business at Washington University of St. Louis (US) that compares the numbers in a vid (short, 14 min) “Why you haven’t caught CV-19″

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTFOsQfDFi8&feature=youthtu.be

    which explains how R0 can be 2.8 while R is only .48 which explains the figures from the “petri dishes” of the ships. Seems R0 assumes 100% of the people are susceptible while R factors in how many are resistant. The R value points to extinction. The plots support this statement. Especially where the much touted “second wave” will not likely happen unless one believes China’s fear mongering.

    And the cost figure is likely highly accurate and is the tax amount needed to pay off just the additional interest burden.

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    Roger Knights

    https://reason.com/2020/05/28/as-lockdowns-are-lifted-is-the-covid-19-reproductive-number-rising-or-falling/?utm_medium=email
    As Lockdowns Are Lifted, Is the COVID-19 Reproductive Number Rising or Falling?
    Two models generate strikingly different estimates.
    Jacob Sullum5.28.2020 3:10 PM

    the Gu model’s projections “are considerably less optimistic” than the projections from other widely cited models. Historically, Gu notes, his model’s COVID-19 death projections have matched the actual fatalities counted by the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center much better than the model used by the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME). On May 2, for instance, the Gu model predicted 101,950 deaths in the United States by today, compared to the IHME projection (since revised) of 71,918. The current Johns Hopkins tally is 100,415.

    The Gu model predicted that the death toll would reach 100,000 by May 25, and that happened just a couple of days later. It is now projecting more than 200,000 deaths by August 28. A projection by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, leaked to the press early this month, predicted that mark would be reached by June 1, which thankfully has proven to be excessively pessimistic. But if history is any guide, the IHME projections err in the opposite direction. They currently go only as far as August 4, when the predicted death toll is about 132,000, compared to more than 173,000 in the Gu model.

    Since the Gu model’s death projections incorporate its estimate of the reproductive number, it seems to have a pretty good handle on the latter, which suggests it is closer to the mark than the University of Utah model. Nationally, the Gu model shows the reproductive number falling from 2.26 on February 5 to a low of 0.91 on April 11, then beginning to rise on April 28 and reaching 1.02 today.

    10