JoNova

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Sweden is trapped in an interminable deadly half-lockdown

The Swedish soft lockdown will cost a lot more in the long run

Despite the relaxed approach, Sweden still had major changes in behaviour and movement patterns. The “half lockdown” may have stopped the exponential growth, but it wasn’t enough to reduce the spread. So Sweden is now trapped into maintaining some kind of isolation measures for months while other countries open up around them, and possibly, fly right over.

Norway’s sharp hard action and closed borders cost more in the short run, but they are now tracking towards zero cases and recovery beckons. Sweden has twice as many cases per capita as Norway, and ten times as many deaths, and there’s little sign the new infections are declining, nor that herd immunity is close. Antibody tests show that by late April only 7% of Stockholm may have been exposed to the virus, much less than the 20+ percent that the Swedish Chief Epidemiologist was expecting. 

In the graph below the number of cases are on the same scale, though Sweden has twice the population. Given that viruses grow and decline on exponential scales, the Swedish curve could have still shrunk almost as fast as it rose — like Norway’s did.

Sweden compared to the UK, Covid-19, graph.

Sweden (grey) population 10 million, compared to Norway (red) population 5 million. Click to enlarge.

Norway: 12 days after major quarantine measures the curve gets crushed

In Norway, major lockdowns were announced on March 15, with headlines like: “Norway takes most far-reaching measures ever experienced in peacetime over coronavirus”.… and new daily cases peaked 12 days later on March 27th.

Norway is planning to reopen flights with Denmark and Finland on June 15. But the three Scandinavian countries will exclude Sweden for the moment because there are too many infections.

As other countries have reduced their cases and their deaths Sweden has risen to the top of the daily death rate chart in Europe.

Sweden’s coronavirus experiment has well and truly failed

Amit Katwala, Wired

The way the Swedish response has been structured has made the country more resistant to changing tack during the epidemic. Sweden’s expert agencies are kept quite separate from the government, which is generally a good thing, because it means that scientific issues don’t become politicised. “But if the expert agency is making bad decisions there is nothing to counter it,” [Lena Einhorn, a virologist and author] points out.

Swedes are generally more trusting of authority and science than those in other countries, he adds. Despite recent murmurings of disquiet, the agency remains broadly popular among the public – and Tegnell has become something of a cult figure in Sweden, with toasts on his birthday and people getting tattoos of his face. But that’s been part of the problem. “The biggest problem in Sweden is there is really only one voice – that voice is the public health agency, and in particular Anders Tegnell,” Einhorn says.

h/t Travis T Jones.

Mobility in Sweden was reduced by about half compared to reductions in Norway and London

Apple iPhone data suggests that requests for directions on public transport may have been reduced by nearly half in Stockholm. This compares to a 70% reduction in Oslo, Norway and the 85% fall in London, UK. See the graphs below.  These are requests for directions. They aren’t passenger records, and people doing regular trips probably don’t use them. But we can see that whatever the change in behaviour was in London, it was less severe in Norway, and about half in Stockholm.

Oslo Apple Traffic, graph, coronavirus, lockdown, data.

Oslo Apple traffic data

Pandemics cause economic pain regardless of what governments do

Even if the government doesn’t mandate restrictions, apparently many people choose to stay home anyway. This is what we see in Sweden.

Oslo Apple Traffic, graph, coronavirus, lockdown, data.

Stockholm Apple traffic data

Oslo Apple Traffic, graph, coronavirus, lockdown, data.

London Apple traffic data

Mobility Aps are an imperfect proxy for the economy. But there are at least some reports that suggest there is an economic pain in Sweden and claim a lot of people are out of work. By some estimates 17% of the workforce in Sweden is either unemployed or counted in the government furlough program.

 

The UK compared to Sweden

Even the UK, which was caught unprepared and with a high density population, is managing to reduce the spread. The late start meant the UK ended up with a dreadful tally, and had to do some of the most severe restrictions of the three. But even so, and even with the sabotage of open borders bringing in 10,000 people a day, the UK has gradually cut their 5,000 new cases a day down to one third of that.

Beware — there are two different scales on the graph below. (!) The UK population is six times larger than Sweden, it had ten times as many cases at the peak, but putting them on the same scale makes it hard to compare the shape of the curves.

The effects of the harder lockdown in the UK show in May. Daily new cases in the UK are now a third of what they were at the peak.

 

Sweden compared to the UK, Coronavirus, Graph.

Sweden (grey) compared to the UK (blue). Note the diffent scales, the UK daily cases are 10 times higher than Sweden. | Worldometer: UK peak daily infections

 

The UK decline in cases would have been faster if the borders in the UK were not open. Plane traffic into the UK was hugely reduced, but there were still 10,000 arrivals a day, bringing in something like 300 new infections a day which would go on to infect another 600 people before that line of infection died out. (This is assuming an Ro of 0.7 for the UK as estimated by Imperial College). So the UK tally was effectively inflated by 900 new cases a day, which made the severe lockdown much less effective, and not surprisingly draining enthusiasm.

I remain baffled that any government would demand 60 million people stay strictly at home while allowing foreigners to fly in without mandatory quarantine.The UK Swamp-Expert advisor were clearly thinking of ‘herd immunity” when they modeled some excuses not to close the borders.  It is almost a form of sabotage. The economic advantage of letting sick people fly in without putting them in mandatory hotel isolation must be a tiny fraction of the lockdown cost. It makes no sense and would burn through the patience and social capital of the UK people.

Sweden also kept borders open which presumably must work against the 50% lockdown. It would be good to have flight data in Sweden.

Citimapper Ap Data

Many media outlets have used the Citymapper Ap data, so I’ve included that here.

The Citimapper Ap was a project that started in London. suggests even larger restrictions, with a 70% reduction in Stockholm in late March, compared with 90% in London.

Citimapper Stockholm and London mobility, graph, Coronavirus

Citimapper Stockholm and London mobility, graph, Coronavirus

Sweden obviously hasn’t done enough. Sweden could easily have crushed the curve like Norway, and be set to reopen domestically. Instead the infection drags on. Most other nations will not accept Swedish passengers without a mandatory two week quarantine.

About CityMapper data:

The Citymapper Mobility Index is calculated by comparing trips planned in the Citymapper app to a recent typical usage period. Trips planned (‘Get Me Somewhere’ and related) are correlated to trips taken (GO mode). Typical usage period is defined as 4 weeks between Jan 6th and Feb 2nd, 2020. To better capture typical usage in certain cities we are using different periods in Paris (Feb 3rd to March 1st) and Hong Kong and Singapore (both Dec 2nd to Dec 22nd). A day is defined as midnight to midnight UTC, thus for certain cities may not correspond with calendar days. We update the data every day at 7am UTC.

Our users are public transport users and also use us for walking, cycling, and some micromobility and cabs. We are not used for driving. We do not track the demographics of our users. We have enough data in our published cities to be confident that it represents a real change in behaviour. However, it is a sample set of general mobility and may not represent the real world exactly.

REFERENCES

Worldometer

Apple Mobility Data

Data: https://citymapper.com/cmi/compare

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Rating: 6.8/10 (56 votes cast)
Sweden is trapped in an interminable deadly half-lockdown , 6.8 out of 10 based on 56 ratings

160 comments to Sweden is trapped in an interminable deadly half-lockdown

  • #
    MrGrimNasty

    There are major factors that make this sort of comparison rather problematical.

    In Sweden the vast majority of deaths are concentrated in 2 places (no not racist, just factual):-

    (1) The extremely dense housing of recent immigrants who have been pretty non-compliant with any measures.
    (2) Care homes – with a large immigrant workforce.

    The majority of deaths are over 70s, less than 200 under 60.

    As for the UK? Social isolation effectively collapsed in the under 20s weeks ago, and in recent weeks beaches have been packed with no possibility of isolation, Extinction Rebellion have been out again, and now the BBC is fomenting large ‘race’ demonstrations and probably hoping it degenerates into a riot/looting to prove just how liberal they are. So whatever the trend is, it ain’t because of no lock-down.

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    • #
      Roger

      As has been identified and pointed out elsewhere, the infection and mortality curve in the UK shows that it had already peaked Before the lockdown was brought in.

      What has yet to have numbers accurately put to it are the number of deaths resulting from the lockdown and abandoned / postponed medical treatments for cancer and other diseases. Macmillan Cancer research have published a report suggesting that as many as 2 million may be at risk from lack of testing, early identification and treatment of cancer as a direct result of the lockdown. That does not include heart or other life-threatening problems.

      It begs the question of how many cancer or other deaths will there be for each one ‘saved’ from Covid-19.

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      • #
        Kalm Keith

        There are some very serious issues in there Roger: the consequences of focusing on the tiny virus to the exclusion of confounding factors and “The greater good”.

        KK

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        • #

          Roger — Not so. Look at the London data. People were dramatically changing behavior in March (see graph above), but the peak of infections was after that, somewhere between April 5 and 10 in the UK. Look closely, — the UK daily rate of infections then stayed constant for nearly a whole month, only starting to decline after the first week of May. It’s all blurred with the sabotage of new fly-in-virus cases. Why haven’t UK conservatives revolted against that stupid policy?

          Mr Grim: whatever the trend is, it ain’t because of no lock-down.

          And it’s just a coincidence that Germany, Norway, Japan, Italy, Spain, South Korea and China all took decisive action and 12 days later the exponential curves suddenly stopped growing.

          And no one could have predicted that Brazil would be digging mass graves. Or that Sweden would have more viral spread than nations which did tougher quarantines.

          I hate to rain on peoples Swedish parade, but I’m just putting the data ahead of the politics.

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          • #

            people see what they want to see. A graph tells a thousand stories on the internet

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            • #
              Peter C

              That is probably true professor. People will see what they want to see.
              But that does not mean that a graph can be interpreted in a thousand different ways.
              A graph is scientific shorthand conveying precise information (hopefully). Thank you Rene Descates.

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            • #
              el gordo

              ‘Sweden’s top epidemiologist has admitted his strategy to fight COVID-19 resulted in too many deaths, after persuading his country to avoid a strict lockdown.’ SMH

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          • #
            ImranCan

            If the goal is to minimise the death count of people who died of (or with) Covid19 then its clear that Sweden is not successful compared to other Scandanavian countries or Aus/NZ. They have about 440 deaths per million and still rising and Aus and NZ basically have close to zero. The UK has about 600 deaths per million. About 85% are above 70 and over 90% of all the deaths are people with other serious diseases.

            But that isn’t really the goal. No one will remember the excess deaths from this because the numbers are not exceptional, regardless of the measures taken. The goal is to minimise economic damage. Everyone will remember this recession. Australia is now in recession for first time in 29 years. As is almost everybody else. That is the real catastrophe and that was definitely brought about by the lockdowns.

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          • #
            Roger

            Hi Jo,
            I think that London is something of a special case due to a number of factors including the very high BAME population percentage (~twice as likely to get Covid-19) and some very crowded / over-crowded living conditions. We must also remember that people working in London were unable to change behaviour or distance when it came to travelling by tube or bus.

            I understand that the UK curve is somewhat distorted and elongated because of three factors:
            One, as you identify, continued access of people into the UK bringing it with them;
            Two the way in which elderly were swiftly sent from hospital to care homes with or carrying the virus and then spreading it to other vulnerable people; and
            Three because deaths are being recorded as from Covid-19 for seemingly the majority of deaths regardless of whether it was/was not a contributory factor and in many cases where even the GP has stated the individual had no symptoms. We know one family whose son died in a motorcycle accident that was recorded by the Coroner as from Covid-19, the family have, with support from the paramedics who attended, now instructed a solicitor to challenge that. Anecdotal I know, but there is growing concern that the headline death figures help to politically justify the destruction of the economy, businesses and jobs.

            Adjust for those factors and the peak infection rate appears to have been reached prior to lockdown as has been charted and published elsewhere.

            A significant ‘Unknown’ is the number of people who have had and recovered from Covid-19 without medical intervention or testing and so don’t figure in any statistics relating to spread, infectivity or mortality rates. As a family both my wife and daughter had it in February (all the classic symptoms) neither I nor son had it and bed coupled with paracetamol and drinking lots of water saw both recover in 4 days – much worse than normal Flu. Btw daughter is 32, son 27 and we are both well into our 60s.

            Daughter had returned from a week-long conference in Florida that was attended by people from all over the world including China – the first started going down with what appeared to be ‘Extreme Flu’ by the Thursday during the conference. She came down with it a few days after her return as did 7 of the 9 people her office who had been at the conference – all recovered from what we only later discovered were classic Covid-19 symptoms with the worst affected taking ~14 days. We know around 30+ other people who have had this and recovered in the same way without medical attendance or testing, again where their other family members had no sickness. None of these appear in any official statistics or in mortality rates for those who catch it.

            Some interesting figures have emerged during the last week or so:

            ONS large scale study found 79% of people with Covid-19 in their body had no illness or symptoms and were apparently resistant to it. That fits with Californian and European studies just published which found that a significant percentage carry T-Cells able to identify and destroy Covid-19 – assumed/suspected to be from past exposure to the common cold (another coronavirus. So to some greater or lesser extent there is a degree of Herd Immunity which pre-dates Covid-19 – and so conceivably could be as high as 79% in the UK , although at this stage that has to be just speculation.

            Just published by Public Health England [PHE] and reported in the Mail online are risk comparisons between Under 40s and older people and the likelihood of dying if infected And becoming sick with it:
            60-69 year olds 27 times more likely
            70-79 year olds 50 times more likely
            Over 80s 70 times more likely

            Other PHE statistics show underlying life-threatening comorbidities where people died with, but not necessarily from, Covid-19:
            45% Heart conditions
            21% Diabetes
            27% Obesity
            20% High blood pressure
            Clearly some had a combination of these underlying conditions.
            https://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-8381847/Now-know-coronavirus-not-random-killer-one-size-fits-lockdown-come-end.html

            Jo, I appreciate all of your own concerns about Covid-19 but personally, from our experiences, I am far more concerned about the huge number of people in urgent need of treatment or testing and diagnosis for life-threatening conditions who have been put on hold because of the political reaction to concerns (and subsequent political fallout) about the NHS being overwhelmed by Covid-19 cases. I also incline towards the view that there is far more Herd Immunity than anyone anticipated – experts were stating that as it is a Novel Coronavirus there will be no natural resistance to it.

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            • #
              Kalm Keith

              Thanks for putting that up Roger.

              Very useful.

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            • #
              David Ashton

              Excellent comments Roger. The number that will interest me is the UK Excess Deaths over past 5 year average for the whole of 2020, I doubt it will be very large. The premature deaths due to the lockdown will really start to kick in next year.

              71

              • #
                Environment Skeptic

                Fair enough David, however/in any case, do the UK Exxcess Deaths employ Stevensons Screens, and how close to airport runways are the sensors?

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            • #

              Hi Roger, I am very interested in your experience – closer to the virus than most: very useful for the rest of us.

              First however (as I hail from the UK) I must agree with Jo Nova on the timing of the London UK peak.

              Now the questions.

              Do you and/or your son smoke or vape?

              Do you and/or your son drink neat spirits – say a shot at least twice per week?

              How are your vitamin D levels – from sunshine, fish oil or otherwise?

              I hope you don’t mind answering – I’m just looking for anecdotal support/contradiction for several plausible hypotheses that I have. Your wife and/or daughter on the above might be useful too: but no pressure – please.

              Keep safe and best regards

              42

              • #
                Roger

                Hi Nigel, I smoke but son, daughter and wife don’t so that makes me much less susceptible to start with.

                I definitely drink near spirits on a daily basis, albeit probably no more than 4 or 5 measures of gin a day nowadays. He drinks beer along with the other very fit rugby players. He has a landscape gardening business and so working outside 8+ hrs a day, so probably good vitamin D levels.

                My vitamin D levels are probably high as I spend a lot of time outdoors, 5-8 hours a day and a couple of weeks ago began taking vitamin D supplements to be on the safe side.

                Daughter is very fit – 1hr of Cross Fit daily plus 5-7 mile run. Hasn’t drunk alcohol for around 10 weeks.

                Wife plays tennis 5 days a week, a lot of time outside and is a wine drinker.

                Hope that helps.
                Best regards R

                50

              • #
                Roger

                Nigel,
                should have included this. About 3 days after my wife recovered, in the late afternoon I began to feel that I was going down with “something” with early signs of headache, sore throat etc and when 9.00pm (my drinking hour) was reached I resorted to my preferred prophylactic medicine, namely half a bottle of neat gin. Felt 100% the next day and have since. Not saying it worked and not sure I would advise others to try it. But many years ago in the early 1980s when I had businesses in Texas and used to go to Mexico quite often at weekends a doctor friend said I was the only person he knew who never came back with massive stomach upsets. He put it down to the fact that the bugs couldn’t tolerate my evening alcohol intake ….. and since then I have often found that Flu, if caught at the outset, doesn’t seem to like a substantial dose of gin either.
                R

                50

              • #
                Eddie

                Roger, That reminds me of the Irish remedy for going down with something, Hot Toddy, of hot whiskey and something. There might be something in it after all.;-)

                30

      • #
        greggg

        ‘It begs the question of how many cancer or other deaths will there be for each one ‘saved’ from Covid-19.’
        How many less iatrogenic deaths will there be? From 2016, ‘Johns Hopkins patient safety experts have calculated that more than 250,000 deaths per year are due to medical error in the U.S.’
        https://hub.jhu.edu/2016/05/03/medical-errors-third-leading-cause-of-death/

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      • #
        A C Osborn

        Roger, the non COVID-19 deaths have nothing to do with “lockdown” and everything to do with the Government and NHS not taking advantage of the Private Sector to take over the those patients.
        It was also poor policy that placed COVID-19 patients in every hospital mixing them with non COVID-19 patients. The UK no longer has “Isolation” hospitals like we used to have when we had epidemic illnesses like Small Pox & Polio etc.
        That rendered all hospitals virtual no go areas for normal patients, even when they built the Nightingale Hospitals with thousands of spare beds they did not change their policy.
        Mistake upon mistake all the way through.

        62

        • #
          Roger

          Agree completely, badly handled from the outset relying on the “Experts” whose software program got it so wrong over Foot and Mouth, SARS etc.

          PHE must also be held accountable for their multiple failings.

          40

    • #
      TedM

      The pictures of the beaches in the UK that I have seen, hardly suggest that they were packed. Add to that they are outdoors, very different to indoors.

      143

    • #
      yarpos

      Re the concentration of cases, in the UK case its interesting to note that death rates are much higher in England than they are in Scotland and Wales. Probably for similar reasons.

      30

    • #
      North Vega

      Great points since both groups you point to are what I’ve been reading Sweden admits to failing.

      What’s interesting is that Stockholm by testing showed only 7 % of people with antibodies, so is this virus really as contagious via aerosol as initially believed in a slightly restrained society? Reports out of Italy do suggest that the mutated virus strains cause fewer complications than earlier caseloads, so that’s good news if true.

      Regardless, even though Sweden’s cases per day remain high, their daily intensive care caseload is trending downward along with deaths per day. IHME projections were 450 deaths per day for end of May, down to 130 projected weeks ago, to now actual numbers showing even less by European CDC reported daily deaths at Our World In Data. Last 3 day average is about 25 per day, but everybody knows about the lag.

      Sweden has gotten a handle on the nursing home issue, and why the intensive care caseload is falling would be interesting to know if daily caseload is still high. Is it treatment improvement, or strains are less virulent?

      50

    • #
      Bill In Oz

      Tegnel admits he killed too many Swedes :

      “Sweden’s controversial decision not to impose a strict lockdown in response to the Covid-19 pandemic led to too many deaths, the man behind the policy, Anders Tegnell, has acknowledged.” I
      https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-52903717

      So when we he be put up on criminal charges ?

      22

    • #
  • #
    Ken Davis

    Way too soon to call. The countries that are “opening up” after lockdown are seeing rising cases. Also despite Sweden’s consistently high case numbers, the death rate is dropping. They may simply have killed of the most vulnerable a bit more quickly than the rest of us. Time will tell. The long latency and infectious period and high rate of asymptomatic infection make this a bugger of a thing to manage and study.

    352

    • #
      TedM

      “They may simply have killed of the most vulnerable a bit more quickly than the rest of us.”

      Or they are learning to use HCQ+zinc in the early stages of infection.

      162

    • #
      yarpos

      One look at euromomo.eu tells the real story of a Sweden vs UK comparison. Excess deaths in UK ran at twice the levels they did in Sweden. Across Europe death rates are returning to normal levels.

      71

      • #
        Bill In Oz

        But the UK has 65 million people
        And Sweden just 10.5 million.
        So having twice as many people dying means they are actually doing far better Yarpos..

        618

        • #
          yarpos

          The figures in euromomo are per capita, using absolutes is another bit of game playing when doing comparison across countries

          120

      • #
        A C Osborn

        Allow me to enlighten you about the thrust of Jo’s arguement.
        In the last 2 weeks here are the numbers on deaths.
        2 weeks ago
        UK Deaths 2441 = 36.4 deaths/million population
        Sweden Deaths 319 = 31.9 deaths/million population

        Last week
        UK Deaths 1808 = 26.9 deaths/million population
        Sweden Deaths 359 = 35.9 deaths/million population

        To put it in to persoective their most densely populated city is Stockholm with just under 1,000,000 million people, under normal conditions ie non lockdown London has twice that many people packed in to the Tube railway carriages twice a day.

        53

  • #
    Roger

    The UK ONS (Office of National Statistics) ran their own tests on a significant population sample, published last week. To the surprise of many they found that 79% of those testing positive for the Coronavirus were asymptomatic and suffering / had suffered no ill health.

    That tends to fit with Californian and European research that has found that a significant percentage of the population have T-Cells able to identify and destroy Covid-19, in other words a pre-existing immunity. It is being suggested that this is as a result of past exposure to Common Colds which are a Coronavirus.

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    • #
      William Astley

      ..79%… of the covid virus ‘victims’ have no symptoms. That is good news. If we could increase that percentage from say 79% to 99%, and reduce the death rate for the 1% to say 0.1% using antibodies, the covid problem would be solved.

      In large cities is it possible to get to zero covid cases, by isolating? There is a strong anti mask culture in the US and in Canada.

      Wearing a mask, is to show fear of the covid virus. Only old men/women and some young women (who may be nurses) wear masks in public, in the US and Canada (except on public transit). To be young is to not wear a mask, but still try to distance.

      60

      • #

        IT would really suit the Dems and China if Republican states turned mask wearing (or not) into a fashion statement rather than a question of science.

        Great way to get the best economies to avoid the cheapest solution.

        Do the Republicans want to restore the economy or look “brave”?

        68

        • #
          Richard Ilfeld

          It is becoming less appropriate to talk about Republican/Democrat
          than urban/exurban, government/non-government, this state/that state.

          Suggesting with of our two major parties have anything approaching a coherent policy is a cruel joke….
          because we have had very good local leaders of both parties lately and are politically active, we get massive amounts of fundraising
          appeals from both sides. To suggest they are written with the sophistication of fifth graders would eb an insult to fifth grade teachers everywhere.

          We have some major social experiments going on.

          Florida remains a very populous state, bigger than any Scandanavian country, with multiple urban centers and a huge elderly population, including several “nursing
          communities”; clusters of over 20,000 seniors. It continues to chart its own unique course. We never stopped non-covid healthcare, we never stopped golf, we never closed the beaches except in our three most urban counties. Virtually all measures were requests rather than orders, law enforcement generally had a light touch and compliance was high.

          We’ve had six days of a complete collapse of the regime in riots and demonstrations in 20-30 urban centers. The spike we do or do not have in a couple of weeks will tell us much. One party pretended a day at the beach was a hazard, but of course the chanting, running, jostling, and sweating in the riot crowds is what one needs to test a pandemic theory.

          We have states like California where, unless one is elite, one cannot go out except for groceries.

          Both parties exist to some degree in all states but since we have no national policy, the 50 disparate impacts on 50 state parties, in over 90% of cases each with representation in Washington or the statehouse, leads to policy paralysis.

          I’d remind you, though it was little reported, that early on Florida tried to quarantine itself from New Yorkers for the half day it took the courts to intervene, and we have had in place a request that those coming to their seasonal homes here to escape the city self-quarantine for 14 days. I need not tell you the names we Floridians are called
          by the sophisticated New Yorkers….it is the usual litany. But the social pressure on those who have come here to escape the city has been real…..we have over 4,000,000 million part time residents, most of whom come in winter, but many of whom have come to escape both a higher perceived risk and a more draconian regime. Thus nearly 1/2 of Florida’s cases are not full timne residents.

          I have spoken before about some of our unique and cloistered populations. One that has suffered terribly is the Navajo nation.

          The woke dare not speak of the role of the homeless and undocumented in Covid spread; a careful reading of the statistics by zip code tells a story. Geographers can often ferret out a truth politicans hope to hide.

          When you say “cheapest” solution….that in itself is complicated. In the US, “cost” from the standpoint of hte gears of government means “on whom can the burden be dumped?”.

          Thus far, government employees have not missed a paychek, nor have the elites who can work from home. University academic staff, and secondary school satff are still being paid…and who cares about the folks who work in the cafeteria. And shutdown buys a delightful bath in the power trip of full social control, otherwise unavailable in our democracy. The little people are suffering and the elites love it. Watch and listen to them and dare to tell me I am wrong.

          But now, with fall coming, tax receipts come due. Will we pay teachers who aren’t in the classroom? Business is a little slow, guess there need to be some white collar
          layoffs. Are pensions are at risk. Hey, folks…..

          A 10% staff cut at CBS sure changed their attitude overnight. The idea that it’s OK to demonstrate but not to go to church has left a lot of our mini-Mussolinis gasping for air trying to figure out what to say next, or just removing their feet from their mouths.

          Apple has an app that reports broadly when people are on the move.

          The US, for good or ill, is opening up and the politicians are chasing the public. We are in a period of utter chaos, and it’s not just the demonstrations.

          The 85% of America that isn’t urban is getting back to work, with good will and better public health habits. Five million small businesses, and 50,000 larger ones, want their customer to be safe and want them back. And about 40 statehouses and a large number of big cities are behind the curve.

          Since a governance divide Democratic/Republican overlaid the geography before COVID, you could draw that conclusion.

          I see a common sense/stupidity divide. Stupidity wins….I sincerely hope those with common sense are well rewarded in November, irrespective of political party. We have far to few.

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          • #
            Richard Ilfeld

            A brief codicil: The cases/MM, deaths/mm virus results are similar in California and Florida. Both are among the
            more “successful” of our states, both, absent a few and probably unavoidable hotspots due to international travel
            and illegal border crossing, have done very well. California went into and still supports full monte, Florida
            de minimus.

            I’d conclude, if you secure your high risks and manage your borders, you’ll get through this. Killing your economy in the process,
            or merely doing mostly repairable damage, is a local option.

            30

    • #
      Gary

      Of course ALL of these arguments are predicated on the accuracy of the testing regime. It’s not hard to find medical people who claim that the testing is so unreliable as to be utterly worthless – false positives, false negatives, inconsistent results for the same person, identifying fragments of a virus only (apparently most healthy people can test positive for this), identifying other coronaviruses like the common cold (I read somewhere there are currently around 150 viruses of all types in human circulation), inability to test for something called ‘viral load’, which I guess determines whether or how sick you get, etc etc. Why doesn’t anybody seem to be interested in talking about this?

      31

  • #
    Broadie

    Interesting data.

    People with Iphones in Sweden are freedom loving and suffer from claustrophobia.
    A good Swede has a Nokia and stays home.
    What are the Samsung people doing?

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  • #
    Gazman

    It seems to me that Sweden’s response is the only honest one. Everybody initially justified lockdowns to flatten the curve. Now the justification is to ersdicate the virus. As virtue-signaling expert NZ PM Adern said, they were hunting down every last virus.
    So, Norway eliminates the virus, then what? They keep their borders closed forever? The same question must be asked of Australia and NZ. Why are State borders closed against medical advice and constitutional law? Will our national border never again open for fear of bringing in anyone with the virus?
    In the long run, Sweden will be open for business with herd immunity, while Norway, Australia and NZ will continue to hide under the bed,
    This whole Covid saga has become a farce.

    3211

    • #
      AZ1971

      In the long run, Sweden will be open for business with herd immunity, while Norway, Australia and NZ will continue to hide under the bed

      That’s my issue as well. Jo goes on and on about the R0 value to reach herd immunity, but how do you reach herd immunity if no one is ever exposed?

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      • #
        Timo Soren

        Mutation or vaccine.
        Both provide measurable success…
        while herd immunity may cause large number of extra deaths … but so does proverty.

        This bug is a new way to die. Yes we probably have reacted incorrectly in numerous
        ways, but the fact is in the end we can compare NZ/Au/No to UK/US and others
        but right now it seems clear, both ways have arguments on their side.

        In a decade we may have good data and theory.

        42

        • #
          Analitik

          Don’t ignore treatment. In the long term, CoViD-19 may need us to live with it – the history of vaccines against coronaviruses is not encouraging so way may need to just stay on top of it with effective treatments as we do with Malaria

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          • #

            Gazman, True politicians aren’t honest.

            They were aiming to flatten the curve and slowly infect people over 6 -12 months. (Aka the Herd Immunity plan, or the 1918 Flu plan). Then they discovered they were wrong, and this was a painful stupid solution that would kill people and the economy.

            But they didn’t want to admit they were wrong. Nearly every Western Country has ended up trying to Crush the Curve (Jo’s plan :-) ). It was always the only sensible option with an unknown virus that may be a bioweapon, may have long term effects, has a high hospitalization rate and for which we were hopelessly underprepared, vulnerable, and stupidly dependent on China for more than half our essential medicines and supplies.

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      • #
        A C Osborn

        Why do you need herd immunity when there are prophylactic drugs that prevent you getting it or getting a bad case of it and drugs that cure you if you do?
        The world is being conned by the WHO, US CDC & FDA and the UK NHS, there are many drugs that have alredy beeen proved to work, but they insist we must have clinical trials and then cancel them based on a very poor study.

        Time for the public to wise up and demand proper medical care.

        103

    • #
      el gordo

      ‘Australia and NZ will continue to hide under the bed … ‘

      We rejoice in our Covid free south sea bubble. What country do you live in?

      107

      • #
        MudCrab

        No, we are hiding under a bed making statements about ‘all in this together’, ‘difficult times’ and before feeding us scraps by ‘easing restrictions’ using their ‘roadmaps’.

        You do no what bubbles do, right? They pop.

        None of this is Reasonably Practical. This is the real world with infinite variables, not some text book case study that removes and simplifies the discussion in order that the core lesson can be understood.

        The sooner our Elite and Betters quietly fess up that it was all a massive over reaction and scrap all internal restrictions, the better.

        92

        • #
          el gordo

          The Hiroshima bomb killed 100,000 people, the Wuhan Institute virus killed roughly the same number of Americans. You need to take this a little more seriously. History will decide whether its been an overreaction by Morrison, Five Eyes and all that.

          I agree that the states should open up their borders, but obviously if some Premiers have miscalculated then they’ll suffer at the polls.

          Do you think we should immediately open up the airports for international tourists, students and migrants to flood in?

          26

    • #
      PeterW

      As pointed out before, being an island does not mean that our borders are impermeable. We are not stopping smugglers now, we have vast populations to our immediate north, with marginal health services, and there are these things called boats and aeroplanes.

      The idea that we can secure our borders by simply re-writing a few regulations and setting up testing stations at our major tourist entry-points is ludicrous.

      The US has a comparable coastline to ours, and a budget of around US$10Billion for their CoastGuard alone….. and they still cannot fully secure their coastline. Such things are often far easier in theory than in practice.

      Long-term, if elimination is your goal and lockdown is your tool, we are going to see a chronic repetition of lockdowns until the population get tired of the costs and embuggerance……

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      • #
        Bill In Oz

        So best give up now ?
        Yeahh, just rollover and let the infected in by the thousand So they can kill us all.
        Great advice Peter W.
        NOT.

        1118

      • #
        el gordo

        We are stopping smugglers and boat people of all persuasions.

        ‘The US has a comparable coastline to ours …’

        Australia is an island continent, mostly uninhabitable desert, they won’t come here.

        57

      • #
        WXcycles

        As pointed out before, being an island does not mean that our borders are impermeable. We are not stopping smugglers now, we have vast populations to our immediate north, with marginal health services, and there are these things called boats and aeroplanes.

        We have a Navy and a Border Force Coast Guard plus a land network of radars, and airborne radars, plus new drones and many more coming, as well as a new fleet of long range offshore patrol vessels for the navy, to go along with a newly built fleet of long range Naval patrol boats. Plus a new fleet of “Pacific patrol boats” which we just built and gave away to pacific Island countries, and PNG, to work against smugglers and pirates. We’ve never had so much capacity to observe and control our borders as today.

        Australia is not like the US, in the US there are massive numbers of runways and docks all over the place smugglers can use. We also don’t have waters teeming with thousands of boats and ships, they’re quite rare here, so they get flown over at least once a day, and video and high res photos taken for deeper analysis. We’re much more able to monitor boats and ships in our region simply because they are fewer and the situation much less confusing than on either US coast. Same applies to the airspace, there are far fewer aircraft to keep tabs on and logged sensor data and imagery means contacts can be traced back to their origins to see where they’ve been and come from. There’s no direct land bridge involved here either and their’s not much of cape your that’s too attractive to fly or sail into. It’s all remote. And the approaches to the top end itself are monitored in depth by airforce, navy and police. Northern Australia also has very few all weather IFR runways with lights, and even less access to turbine or aviation fuel. And all others VFR runways are short, rough and very remote. Ports also are few and far between. They’re all dotted at remote towns, where comings and goings can be easily monitored and controlled, often with just one road in and out to connect to the highway.

        But more to the point there are no new COVID-19 cases popping up in northern Australia.

        And even if smuggling was letting it in, these settlements and towns are already small and isolated, and the distances between significant towns is very long and rarely traveled by almost all the locals. And almost no one travels interstate from such places by car. Smuggling is hardly a significant hurdle to permanently keeping COVID-19 out of Australia or well under control if there are breaches. Northern Australia’s towns and the huge intervening deserts and distances involved, plus costs of domestic air travel are almost an ideal situation for acting as a quasi-quarantine buffer that preserves larger population centers further south.

        The risk isn’t going to come from smuggling, it’ll come from registered shipping and aircraft which we already know about.

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        • #
          MudCrab

          You unironically think the role of the ADF is to monitor Wuhan Flu breaches?

          Okay…

          31

          • #
            el gordo

            ‘ADF is to monitor Wuhan Flu breaches?’

            As flu epidemics usually come out of China I think that would be a prudent move, using our five eyes. We are at war and refugees will soon be turning up in large numbers.

            ‘Britain’s foreign minister said he has spoken to Five Eyes allies including Australia about opening their doors to Hong Kongers.’ Oz

            61

      • #
        el gordo

        ‘ …. setting up testing stations at our major tourist entry-points is ludicrous.’

        You may have taken your eye off the ball, huge numbers of inbound tourists are a thing of the past. So the workload won’t be too hard.

        45

        • #
          PeterW.

          Gordo…. You don’t make you point by misrepresenting mine. It just makes you look shifty.

          1…. People are already coming here illegally and we are already failing to either keep them out or arrest them all when they get here.
          2.It is not about the “workload” at the major tourist ports. It is about the number of other places that people arrive

          Same to you, BiO.
          I am not advocating open borders, just pointing out that they are porous and that a policy of lock-downs as our primary tool when re-infection does occur, will be politically and economically unsustainable. Lockdown may have bought us some time to gather data and determine solutions, but we can’t do it every year for an indefinite period. Do it twice and people are going to ask very pointedly why it didn’t work the first time.

          WXc….. that’s a very long-winded way to tell us that you don’t know your subject. We do not have the resources to check and monitor every aircraft and vessel along our coast. The least desirable visitors are the ones that don’t turn on their transponders. Flying over an area once per day ….. have you ever done any aerial spotting? I have, and the areas are huge, planes are slow in comparison and you cannot positively identify someone determined to be deceitful from 1500′ASL.

          Biosecurity is an element of my business. Yes, we have managed to keep some diseases like Rabies and F&M out of the country SO-FAR… but apart from the occasional idiot entertainer, there is very little interest in smuggling dogs or cloven-footed animals into the country. Humans come here for all sorts of reasons and it’s not even necessary for them to want to stay. Sailors and ports of call. Think about it…

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          • #
            Kalm Keith

            You’re getting to the nitty gritty there.
            :-)
            Well done.

            41

          • #
            el gordo

            ‘People are already coming here illegally ….’

            The planes and boats are not coming here anymore and that is how it will remain until they find a vaccine. We’ll take an economic hit by keeping the borders closed, but its worth it.

            You seem to think that at some point the government will cave in and ease restrictions to allow students, tourists and immigrants back into the country. That would be un-Australian.

            What the ordinary voting public want, is to keep that lot out because there is no advantage for them.

            44

            • #
              PeterW

              Gordo….

              You REALLY don’t know what you are talking about.

              We are not talking about the limited traffic in illegal immigrants across the Timor Sea. We are talking about otherwise legal cargo, fishing and private vessels that continue to cross the waters around our shores by the thousand. Vessels which do not get searched on arrival and for which the health-check relies on the skipper’s declaration.

              The belief that commercial operators will magically become 100% compliant when reporting “just another flu” will result in a minimum of a fortnight’s delay and lost revenue, belongs in fantasy-land. You give people an incentive to hide symptoms and expect them to not react to that incentive?

              Don’t lie about my position. What I SAID is that we can only go into this expensive, harmful lockdown so many times before the majority start asking why it didn’t work the first time and what the alternatives are. What I AM SAYING is that any long-term strategy must be politically and economically sustainable. This is a Democracy , remember?

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              • #
                PeterW

                I mentioned smuggling because we are not stopping that relatively tiny trade now. Your fantasy is that we can increase to size of the problem by several orders of magnitude and simply dismiss the problems inherent in that, with a bunch of hand-waving and straw-man arguments.

                It’s not just about tourists and student.

                21

    • #
      A C Osborn

      Gazman June 3, 2020 at 6:53 am
      Since when does 7% of the population give you “herd immunity”?

      41

  • #
    Travis T. Jones

    Thanks for collating all that information.
    9 days of rioting and total collapse of social distancing will be the next data point to watch for.
    Will there be a rise in cv-19 cases and deaths in the next few weeks?

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    • #

      Travis, there may be, but since rioters are young, it may take 4 weeks or even longer. Two weeks to spike and spread silently among youth, and 4 weeks to infect their parents and grandparents. It may even take another couple of weeks for those cases to end up in hospital.

      That spike may be spread out. It depends on how much testing is being done.

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  • #
    Peter Fitzroy

    It is disheartening to see countries still running failed anti corona virus measures.
    There is more than enough data to show what works.
    Those leaders who continue to preside over polices which cause needless deaths, should be removed from office.

    104

    • #
      Bill In Oz

      And their ‘experts’ sent to work in aged care centers with the dying Covid patients.
      Actually there are 4-5 blokes here who should volunteer to do the same thing.
      It might help them get a grasp on reality.

      822

  • #
    Dunc.

    So whats your answer to how all those countries that controlled the virus are going to stop it spreading again when things go back to normal?
    Quarantine all visitors to your country from now on? Without a vaccine this will just spread again.

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    • #
      TedM

      Dunc, all those questions have been answered previously on this blog. Go Read.

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      • #

        Dunc, the world sits on the cusp of being divided into “the clean zone” and the “virus zone”. If enough countries clear the virus and start a travel bubble where quarantine is not even necessary, then every nation in the dirty zone will want to join it.

        UK and US citizens will be pretty angry not to be able to fly without quarantine.

        Having said that, if winter is coming in the NH and a viral rise looks likely, then there may be a lot of wealthy travellers who want to escape that, and come do that 3 month trip downunder that they always wanted to do. The two week quarantine in Broome doesn’t sound impossible.

        Indeed, tourism data shows that Australia is a long haul holiday and average stays here are long stays even before the virus.

        And all of this is temporary until we get a treatment, a vaccine or a nicer mutant.

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    • #
      el gordo

      ‘Quarantine all visitors to your country from now on?’

      Yes, two weeks in a luxury hotel at your own expense. This will stop the great majority holidaying down under, its the new world order.

      62

      • #
        yarpos

        A whole new industry of Covid Hotels at airports and ports of entry. Quarantining the passengers, crews, baggage handlers and anyone who touches anything to do with new arrivals. With layers of bio security and guarded boundaries. You cant be too safe. Belt and Road money should be available, especially in VIC.

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        • #
          Bill In Oz

          We used to have quarantine stations which did exactly these things at every major Australian port.
          They got abolished in the interests of making economies in the budget.
          Now they have to be recreated at higher cost.

          78

    • #
      el gordo

      ‘Quarantine all visitors to your country from now on?’

      That is the general idea and its working.

      A problem is coming up, there maybe a mass exodus from Hong Kong before September. The wealthy will fly but the lower middle class may require a few cruise ships. Obviously the vetting process will require extra funding to manage a chaotic situation.

      23

  • #
    Bill In Oz

    Jo you mentioned that the UK is now quarantining inbound travellers .

    Actually NO it is not yet. The quarantine measures start on the 8th of June.
    And there will be no quarantine for people from the Channel Islands, the Isle of Ma or the Irish Republic.
    And already lobbyists for the travel industry are pushing for it to be relaxed with Ministers considering these requests.

    The UK government just does not get it.
    Utterly bloody incompetent !

    1317

  • #
    Robber

    The problem is that our political leaders tell us to trust the scientific experts who glory in the titles of Chief Health Officers and academic epidemiologists. The reality is that none of them have experienced such a pandemic before, so they rely on “models”. (Now where have we heard that before?)
    And surprise, surprise, they create different models, and the paths they select are based on their own biases, influenced by their political masters. So in Victoria under Chairman Dan we have a State of Emergency declared and extended as they bask in their new powers – fine someone for sitting on a park bench, taking a driving lesson, visiting their mother etc. They probably see it as the arrival of Utopia, or is it George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, that centres on government over-reach, totalitarianism, mass surveillance, and repressive regimentation of all persons and behaviours within society? Why relax controls when Big Brother knows best?

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    • #
      Bill In Oz

      On the contrary CMO’s rely on the past record of pandemics.
      Models ?
      They are a recent invention by computer nerds.

      312

    • #
      PeterW

      Rob…. It IS Utopia for those who believe that all decisions are best made for us by bureaucrats and authorities with no skin in the game

      Like those armchair strategists who sent wave after wave of troops in bayonet charges gains the barbed-wire and machine guns in 1915, they are convinced that the proper response to failure is more authority and more cannon-fodder……. while they remain safely behind the lines.

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      • #
        Kalm Keith

        That just about sums it up Peter, but a small addition.

        The “on the ground” representative of those decision makers with his handgun. The officer, with the pistol which didn’t have the range to reach the enemy.

        Life can be very complicated.

        11

    • #
      RickWill

      There is one proven model – Taiwan.

      On the doorstep of China.
      Closed borders with China in January.
      Borrowed the CV19 testing procedure from China.
      Implemented tracking and tracing through a myriad of automatic and manual methods.

      Crushed the virus in a matter of weeks. Total of 443 cases in a population of 24M. 7 deaths. Economic impact measured in points of a percent.

      Any country not doing what Taiwan did is simply dull.

      So by the time the rest of the world was realising that China had an outstanding medical system and mostly compliant population when the virus was filling ICU beds in Italy, Taiwan was back to business as usual.

      Taiwan has set the bar very high in terms of pandemic response. Sweden is at the bottom but Brazil may eventually achieve that unfortunate result.

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      • #

        Taiwan has non-stop tracking on everyone’s phone. Theirs is a successful model, but I prefer the option where we get rid of the virus. No need for tracking then.

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        • #
          A C Osborn

          Don’t forget Hong Kong, they also did very well.
          Jo, I think both are appropriate, but if Ivermectin, HCQ + Zinc plus Vitamins C & D are as good as the tests show we needn’t worry about future waves etc.

          ps I would also add Vitamin B12 to cocktail.

          50

          • #

            AC Osborne, I’m looking for the test results of HCQ Zn C D. There are many enthusiastic docs, and suggestive hints, but where are the good studies? No one seems to study HCQ in the outpatient setting.

            Also nations with a lot of HCQ like India aren’t getting great results (though I need those details).

            I’m not saying HCQ isn’t good, I’m looking for more detail, but also suspecting that while it helps it isn’t “the answer” on its own (or with Zn and AZ). Just that it might be helpful.

            India makes most of the world supply. Why isn’t India doing better?

            30

            • #
              Lucky

              https://academic.oup.com/aje/advance-article/doi/10.1093/aje/kwaa093/5847586

              Jo. here is one on outpatient trials-
              It say- . .use of HCQ+AZ is widely misrepresented in both clinical reports and public media, there is significant major outpatient treatment efficacy. there is a need to be widely available and promoted immediately for physicians to prescribe.
              Dr Harvey A Risch. Yale School of Public Health.
              American Journal of Epidemiology. 27May2020
              —-
              Ivermectin- works in-vitro. I have not seen any reports of in-body effects, it has next to no side effects whatsoever, ..!

              20

  • #
    Ruairi

    Population per million death rate,
    Which to Norway and Sweden relate,
    Shows a thousand less die,
    In the former, but why?
    Each year for the ten years to date.

    61

    • #
      Peter C

      Fewer deaths in Norway than Sweden for the past 10 years!

      Ruari, Are you talking about the fact that Norway has a smaller population?

      21

      • #
        Ruairi

        Peter,what I am trying to say (but difficult in verse) is that for every million people in Norway about 7,700 die each year but for every million people in Sweden, about 8,700 die each year.

        70

      • #
        yarpos

        From the 1st line it would seem not

        12

        • #
          Peter C

          It seems you are correct Yarpos and better able to comprehend the verse.

          As to the death rate/million people I am indebted to Ruairi for the information. It seems that Ruairi does not know the reason and neither do I.

          41

  • #

    Aren’t numbers confusing. When I look at (Worldometers) data I see the Swedish case load per million population ranked 24th in the world, lower than countries such as Luxembourg, Spain, Singapore, USA, Belgium, UK and Italy et al. When I look at the deaths per million population, Sweden is ranked 7th, lower than countries such as Belgium, Spain, Italy and equal with France. What that suggests to me is that the infection rate across Sweden is middling but where there are infections, death rates are slightly higher. Conversion of infection to death is subject to complications totally unrelated to lockdown strategies, and more related to who was infected, their circumstances and their subsequent treatment.

    And yet some people look at these numbers and say that the Sweden approach has well and truly failed.

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    • #
      PeterW

      I’m seeing a lot of simple comparisons. Not putting places like Sweden in context by analysing both World-wide comparisons AND demographic variability within Swedish society… looks very much like cherry-picking.

      61

    • #
      RickWill

      The difference in the numbers is simply the result of doing community testing or only testing on hospital entry. Sweden does very little community testing. They do not have a contact tracing process as they are planning for the community to build enough immunity to eventually deprive the virus of new hosts. All the other countries are actively carrying out tests and tracing down contacts of known cases. Another static for Sweden that demonstrates they are only reporting those arriving at hospital is the high death rate. Of all resolved cases 47% have been deaths. That means almost half of the cases in Sweden result in death. It is not that their medical system is bad, but rather they are only counting cases that present at hospital.

      Sweden is only recording deaths known to be infected with COVID19 and dying in hospital. Belgium has recorded all deaths as having COVID19 if they showed symptoms. Many cases were untested.

      Ultimately the overall death rates for 2020 and possibly into 2021 in any country will be the best measure of impact of COVID. Here is data for Italy:
      https://www.corriere.it/politica/20_marzo_26/the-real-death-toll-for-covid-19-is-at-least-4-times-the-official-numbers-b5af0edc-6eeb-11ea-925b-a0c3cdbe1130.shtml?refresh_ce-cp

      The real death toll for Covid-19 is at least 4 times the official numbers»

      Some argue that there are deaths resulting from other causes like cancer because people are not being treated. Likely true but the reason is that the hospital systems in many countries were overwhelmed and the last place anyone would want to be was in hospital with potential high exposure to CV19; go in with cancer, die of COVID19 – the first CV19 deaths in Victoria were in the cancer ward at Alfred Hospital..

      Australia has reduced road deaths by about same number as the CV19 count. So home quarantine for many probably reduced road deaths.

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      • #
        PeterW.

        Rick…. can you actually name a 1st-world country in which the health system has been “overwhelmed”?

        England’s hasn’t.
        The question is not whether people are dying of cancer now, but whether they are being deterred from getting the checkups that would reveal early-stage cancer, with the consequence that they WILL die when advanced cancer finally creates enough adverse symptoms to get them to the hospital… by which time it will be lethal.

        62

        • #
          A C Osborn

          Of course the NHS was in the hotspots, they sent the excess cases of old people out to care homes causing more infections and deaths in them, even when Nightingale beds became available.
          The overwhelming is not how many ICU beds you have it is how many of all kinds of patients you can SAFELY deal with.
          In the UK because we have no Isolation hospitals most hospitals became no go areas for non COVID-19 patients because there was not enough staff not fighting COVID left to nurse them and because they could not be kept safe.
          My brother is still waiting for a Heart Valve operation which was scheduled for late March, he had an emergency balloon procedure last week because his health has deteriorated so badly, he was the only patient there at that time and great care was taken to ensure that he did not have COVID-19.

          I suggest you look at Italy for really overwhelmed hospitals.

          61

    • #
      Aaron Christiansen

      And also say that countries in the middle of summer are somehow responsible for a good response, solely due to lockdown.

      Or that hot countries are more contageous than the cold countries. Then respond with out a skerrick of reading comprehension.

      All you need to do is pick a narrative and stick to it, doggedly.

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  • #
    Zigmaster

    Whilst the commentary that only 7% of the community is shown to have contracted the virus much less than the 20+ % may be viewed as a failure but It also implies that the virus spreads less than is expected. This suggests that models that continually suggest that without strict lockdowns a gazillion people would’ve died is exaggerating the numbers. What appears to be the biggest failure is not that the policies of the Swedes were so flawed but they failed in one particular area. They failed to protect the sick and vulnerable. It was possible to have a large number of cases and a small number of deaths by protecting the vulnerable. And I know I harp on about it but Singapore has had over 35000 active cases and only 24 deaths , yet for much of the last 5 months have had an open active society.
    I know that there are many lockdown fanatics but there is a way that with the benefit of hindsight countries can find a way to steer a path through. There is no doubts that when the next pandemic hits that the approach will be different. Deaths is the primary measure of success and Sweden is more a failure than a success but many countries with strict lockdowns would Be similarly described. When one includes the social and economic upheaval and damage into the equation the post Covid review will realise that the answer lies somewhere between the two extremes.

    71

  • #
    Aaron Christiansen

    Sweden Sees Economic Growth in 1st Quarter Despite Global Pandemic

    Sweden’s GDP increased by 0.1% in the first quarter, when seasonally adjusted and compared to the final three months of 2019. The median forecasters in a Reuters poll of economists had expected to see a 0.6% contraction on a quarterly basis.

    Norway health chief: lockdown was not needed to tame Covid

    This month, the director of Norway’s public health agency, Camilla Stoltenberg, gave an interview in which she said the lockdowns were not necessary to curb the spread of COVID-19.

    “apparently many people choose to stay home anyway. This is what we see in Sweden.”

    ie: people being treated like adults, acting like adults.

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    • #
      RickWill

      Nothing had happened in the 1st quarter in Sweden with regard CV19 or most other places apart from China. China was way down in economic activity in February and March but now back to normal. Just two months after it crushed the virus in its borders.

      The GDP measure that matters will be calendar year 2020.

      Sweden will stil be grappling with the virus in the 4th quarter when most other countries are business as usual. And it will be years before adult children will ever be able to visit their aged parents in Sweden unless it is through a secure glass screen.

      510

      • #
        Lucky

        China, may be back to normal economic activity, they may say, I have doubts,
        have crushed the virus, I do not believe,
        they have crushed their people, lock suspects in homes, two weeks later unlock, remove bodies, do not report.

        10

  • #
    Peter

    Norway seems to disagree that lockdowns work. Florida, South Dakota and other republican states show that lockdowns don’t work.

    Victoria started compulsory lockdowns on March 31 and by the time any effects could be determined (April10), reported cases had dropped the 75%.

    Covid rarely effects people under 60, in Australia out of 103 deaths, 3 are below 60:and none below 40.

    Sweden did the right thing by going for herd immunity and antibody tests show that over ten times the number of people more than reported cases had no symptoms.

    Sweden has a high immigrant population who have not been as diligent as locals in observing restrictions and also the majority of aged care facility unskilled workers are immigrants.

    Sweden’s seems unable to effectively stop infections in these facilities where the majority of deaths occur, however about 99% of deaths were people who had preexisting health problems and a large % of them probably would have died even if not infected with covid.

    So the problem is a lot more complex than Jo makes out and I believe that history will show that the Swedes took the correct course of action.

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/covid-19-update-lockdown-was-not-needed-to-tame-covid-says-norway

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    • #
      PeterW

      Aye….
      When demographics show enormous variation in both infection and deaths, basing your policy on country-wide averages does not appear sensible.

      Reportedly the immigrants who are – along with the elderly – suffering a disproportionate level of infection and death, are predominantly Somali-African.
      - Cultural separation means a lesser tendency to adhere to the social disciplines of the majority.
      - Ditto means less inclined to be outdoors, exercising and sun-exposed, in winter than native Swedes.
      - Physically less adapted to cold weather, weak sunlight and short days…. which appear to be important if we accept the growing association between low VitD and bad outcomes.

      Long term, there is likely to be a growing resistance to making the majority suffer to protect minorities ….. especially when such protection appears available by other means.

      72

      • #
        tonyb

        peter

        you put that very diplomatically yet still had a red thumb compared to only two green thumbs up.

        Eating, living socialising and praying together all have a big impact with a virus that spreads readily in close contact situations. Add in social conditions such as smaller houses due to less wealth and larger numbers living in those small houses

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      RickWill

      Victoria started compulsory lockdowns on March 31 and by the time any effects could be determined (April10), reported cases had dropped the 75%.

      Now you are rewriting history. Victoria stopped all non-essential activities on Monday 23rd March.
      https://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/latest-coronavirus-news-young-people-urged-to-follow-social-distancing-advice/news-story/16a404629f2bf975f4f3a539804b6f2f

      The most effective action in Australia was closing borders but there was already community spread by the time that happened so separating people was the only appropriate action to avoid the situation now seen in Sweden, USA and Brazil.

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  • #

    Jo is starting to sound like my wife, who sits in front of the teevee until terrorized, then orders me and the dog around. It is, I suppose, possible that insufficient coercion at gunpoint in Sweden may be detrimental to someone, but I am willing to bet the other way. Also, prophetic argumentation, even with some statistical backing, is still prophesying until the fat lady sings.

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    nb

    Seems that many of the comments above are supportive of Sweden, or caution against jumping to conclusions. I agree. The long and short of it is that probably everyone who is susceptible to the disease will eventually get it. Why delay this?

    The reason first given for lockdowns was to avoid overcrowding the health system. So far as I am aware while some local areas have had an increased load, overall no Western nation’s health system has come anywhere near being overloaded, and, in fact, many hospitals have been lying near empty.

    A second reason is that a cure or prophylactic might become available, or the virus may weaken. True. But these are unknowns, and you can’t lock down a nation until an unknown occurs.

    All in all, each nation had a slightly different response, and Sweden’s seems no less logical or effective than any other. in fact, Sweden’s response may yet prove the most rational and effective.

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    • #
      RickWill

      Restrictions have been eased in most countries as they have demonstrated the ability to control the spread of the virus. Spain is probably the best example having the most draconian lockdown creating a dramatic reduction in cases:
      http://91-divoc.com/pages/covid-visualization/?chart=countries&highlight=Spain&show=25&y=highlight&scale=linear&data=cases-daily-7#countries
      Yesterday was the first day since March that Spain did not report a death from CV19. Business not yet back to normal but people are free to move about.

      It only takes 3 weeks to rid a population of the virus. There will be a few cases that linger as people battle to overcome it or die. So the virus can be present for quite a while but the level of risk is dramatically reduced because anyone with symptoms knows they should be tested; then any positive test results in contact tracing and quarantining. The control measures are much more localised once the pandemic is under control. There is near zero risk of getting CV19 wandering about in Australia right now but people will still be cautious and will not want to visit Sweden any time soon; or the USA for that matter.

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  • #
    William Astley

    One of the Pharmaceutical blog said…

    The Regeneron, anti covid antibody ‘cocktail’ (two antibodies) has a good chance of defeating covid. In vitro tests were very good. The same technique was used to defeat Ebola. The antibody is given to people as soon as they get sick.

    https://www.biopharma-reporter.com/Article/2020/05/11/Regeneron-devotes-facility-to-COVID-treatment

    Regeneron is starting trials of their covid antibody cocktail, in June. If the tests are successful….

    Regeneron will start production of their antibody, in their New York facility…

    Starting at 100,000 doses per month, in September ramping up to 1 million doses per month.

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  • #
    PeterW

    I’m not familiar with the apps in question, but I’m questioning how much such apps are used by people who do the same commute every day for work….. and how much they are used for unfamiliar routes, like tourism.

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  • #
    peter

    To Rickwill

    I said Victoria started compulsory lockdowns on March 31 and here’s the government link.

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-30/victoria-stage-3-coronavirus-restrictions-as-cases-rise/12101632
    It says….
    “From midnight, Victorians could also face fines if they leave the house for “non-essential reasons”. That is, unless they leaving to get food and supplies, medical care, exercise or for work or education.

    Your link is about stage 1 restrictions where I specifically referred to the compulsory lockdowns stage 3.

    So no cigar Rick!

    23

    • #
      RickWill

      The compulsory requirement followed the request because there were some people not following the request to stay at home on 23rd. The compulsory part followed the request which contained this threat issued on 23rd March:

      “If Australians choose not to self-isolate, if Australians choose to not observe the medical advice of keeping the distance that we’ve recommended then, we’d obviously be forced to take very draconian measures in shutting down,” Mr Morrison said in an ABC interview on Sunday night.

      It simply proved that Australia lacked the social capital to be trusted to do the right thing and had to be threatened with fines AND some fined before they did the right thing.

      In any case everything was closed from 23rd March. Along with the request to stay indoors was this list of closures:

      WHAT WILL SHUT DOWN:
      — All schools from Tuesday

      — Hospitality businesses including bars and cafes

      — AFL season, suspended for two months

      — Retail stores expected to close but can continue selling products online

      — Casinos

      — Cinemas

      — Nightclubs

      — Licensed sections of hotels

      The vast majority of people followed the request issued on 23rd March. They did not need a compulsory order to stay at home but the eventual need for the order simply proves there are dingbats too silly to heed a government request.

      The sustained reduction in daily cases from 3rd April is exactly what would be expected following the stay at home request on 23rd March:
      http://91-divoc.com/pages/covid-visualization/?chart=countries&highlight=Australia&show=25&y=highlight&scale=linear&data=cases-daily-7#countries
      The border controls had already arrested the acceleration in cases by late March.

      You could argue that the request would have sufficed but there were enough people still partying in numbers that the government had no choice but to mandate stay at home.

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      • #
        Peter

        “The vast majority of people followed the request issued on 23rd March. They did not need a compulsory order to stay at home but the eventual need for the order simply proves there are dingbats too silly to heed a government request.”

        Not true. I played competition golf in Victoria on the. 27th of March which was quite legal. People were not subjected to compulsive lockdowns unto Tuesday March 31. Self isolation was only voluntary at this time.

        These lockdowns had absolutely no effect on the reported covid numbers.

        Funny how comrade Daniels who has threatened businesses with fines if they don’t allow employees to work from home, has no problem with a mass “black lives matter” demonstration this weekend. He even said social distancing won’t be enforced.

        Seems covid doesn’t effect leftwing anarchists and racists.

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  • #
    WXcycles

    The past 5 days of new cases:

    29-May-20 … 125,201
    30-May-20 … 124,375
    31-May-20 … 108,767
    1-Jun-20 … 103,946
    2-Jun-20 … 109,901
    TOTAL = 572,190

    Half a million new cases accumulated in just a few hours past 4 days. And this is just the beginning condition of a second global expansion of COVID-19 cases, that’s now commencing.

    There will be about 1 million new cases added every week during this month. The current expansion curve produces ~8 million cases by the 14th of June, and ~10.4 million by 30th of June. The current death-rate will produce the first 1 million (known) deaths some time during the last week of June.

    With the current widespread flouting of isolation needed to prevent spread it’s likely the case curve will move steadily higher towards the end of June, so a much faster exponential expansion will return during late June and early July. But even if we just plodded along at the recent expansion rate this still produces around 17.5 million total cases in 8 weeks – by the end of July.

    It’s highly likely we’ve seen much less than 1% of the new cases that are still to come. For example, if 60% of the globe catching COVID-19 produces herd-immunity (presuming herd-immunity exists and lasts indefinitely), with a global population of 7.76 billion, and 60% of that global population who catch it is 4.65 billion, but conservatively only 20% of these produce symptoms … that equals 931,200,000 known symptomatic cases.

    The current global death rate of the known cases is ~11.5%, so …

    (931,200,000 people / 100) * 11.5 = 107,088,000 deaths to come

    So to get to the 60% global herd-immunity level around 107 million people would die to get there.

    This 107 million deaths figure roughly equals all deaths during WWI and WWII — combined.

    The number of people with permanent damage and health and fitness degradation would likely be larger.

    It also implies that the current day infection level of ~6.5 million people globally is just ~0.7% of the known case numbers required to achieve a global ‘herd-immunity’ level of 60% of the globe with SARS-COV-2 antibodies (and hope this lasts a lifetime). In other words, the know case numbers would need to reach 143 times larger than now (~930 million) to reach the theoretical 60% herd-immunity level.

    A 143 times larger global infection than today is about where ‘herd-immunity’ may stop COVID-19′s spread. However, people like Dr John Campbell have also pointed out that a more contagious virus generally requires a higher percentage of the population to catch it, as much as 80%, to finally cause a highly infectious disease’s active cases to crash and dissipate.

    So something like sheep-dip plus antibiotics had better work or the global economy is not going to be entering a recovery for 2 to 3 years. But the countries that did fight it and virtually eliminated it from their populations, and have maintained a strict international quarantine, will be much less affected by this very economically damaging disease progression in countries that didn’t do that.

    And there’s actually no guarantee a more favorable mutation will develop and spread before > 60% of the global population has been infected, and ~100 million people die. Especially if the current strains just keep building up more cases, and finish off this whole process inside of ~18 to 24 months. A point will come where ant new less lethal mutation will not make any difference to the final dead, as it’s spread will be more impeded internationally, and even domestically, and will not be able to accelerate its growth soon enough to take over the global infection even if it could move around. So that is becoming a remote possibility and hope now.

    Plus it’s just as likely a spreading more lethal strain’s emergence cancels out a positive effect from a spreading less lethal strain.

    And is any country going to volunteer to mass-infect itself with a less lethal? But which is still a lethal strain, that can still mutate into an even more lethal strain again. I very much doubt that will be an attractive option, nor allowed to occur anywhere.

    And if they did do that, it’s still not an answer unless and until they eliminated the earlier lethal strain first, otherwise those would just bloom too id you try to resume normal life. So that won’t work. And if you eliminated it, why would you deliberately infect your entire population with another lethal strain?

    That’s obviously not going to happen so I think that hope is in a practical sense, out of the question (although I don’t deny its merits, but not going to happen).

    There are no easy answers, once the infection gets this big.

    Except, well … there actually is one ‘easy’ answer which we know will work 100% of the time, and that is strict national quarantine for a minimum of 14 days, and s strict home-isolation for about 5 weeks, sans essential services and provision with adequate financial support of the population through it.

    That would almost completely rid the human population of COVID-19 inside of 1.5 months. But apparently that’s too easy for some they’d prefer to do nothing, and kill ~100 million people plus destroy the global economy and prevent it from being able to begin to recover before end of 2021.

    But the main point is humanity and the ‘global economy’ are still dawdling about within the lower ~0.7% of the foothills of the mountain-range of COVID-19 spread to come, if there’s at least ~143 times more COVID-19 infections needed to reach herd immunity by 2022. And that numerical implication seems to be something no one’s ready to hear, yet, and people are completely unaware that’s what will develop. This level of ignorance is especially true of the foolish people endlessly waffling BS about the herd-immunity ‘option’, as opposed to eliminating it and resuming a normal life and beginning to regrow the economy after ~1.5 months of serious isolation to completely end the spreading globally.

    But even then, if you have porous to effectively non-existent borders, plus hyper partisan power-politics you’re probably going to have your domestic economy completely gutted by 2022. Then will progress quickly along the spectrum to the ‘failed-State’ possibilities, down to early 20th century poverty levels, rapidly growing political instability, lawlessness, and a clash of partisan subcultures. The flip-side of a failed global multiculturalism coexistence experiment during the past 40 years.

    Ask yourself, why do we have this hyperbole-dominated race and identity-politics rubbish today? It’s because we had a massive failed multiculturalism coexistence experiment running in the West during the past 40 years. Almost no one else did it. And if that experiment had not occurred, we would not have the politics, media and activist’s hate-fest of hyperbole-dominated race and identity-politics occurring now. Like it or not, this will be the common conclusion of ordinary people which becomes apparent as countries encounter urban conflicts and a mass-media driven inflammation of the whole situation, which is only now commencing.

    You’d think the ‘herd-immunity’ fans would realize this and want to expend 1.5 months of GDP and normal life completely eliminating it nationally and globally as well.

    Nope.

    During the next week there will be ~1 million new cases accruing outside of China, and this will continue every week for a year or two, and most G20 economies in Europe and North America will be unable to recover.

    Meanwhile, the CCP’s mainland, and all of its instruments of State hard-power will have almost no COVID-19 present plus a domestic economy which will be more-or-less fully functioning. It could not have turned out any better for the CCP, if they’d actually planned and executed this as a 5-year plan for a strategic State military operation to take over the world.

    I wonder if they allowed an agenda rich mass-media and partisan politicians and campus activist clowns to tie China into Gordian knots with hyperbole-laden dishonest race and identity-politics, within a massive multi-decades failed multicultural melting-pot integration experiment which said mass-media is determined to inflame at every opportunity?

    Lucky we have free speech in Australia. Oh wait, … we don’t … it’s too offensive. Pity we fought WWII to maintain it though.Which freedom to speak plainly also was not a problem before we embarked on this failed western-only multiculturalism experiment, which was pushed on to us by social-engineering anti-borders and anti nation State globalists and the United Nations. Which farce curiously wants centralized unelected power usurping global authority over everything … and also no competing Sovereign Nation.

    Oh, and to tax us heaps too.

    But what we got out of this actually dis-united non-nations, who now can’t even act to save themselves when they most definitely need to. It’s funny how that’s worked out. Now we just need to figure out why the Western mass-media hates the Western world so much? Maybe those matters are all connected up somehow?

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    • #
      WXcycles

      … The current death-rate will produce the first 1 million (known) deaths some time during the last week of June. …

      This is in error, it should have read, “the first half million (known) deaths some time during the last week of June.”

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  • #
    Boris

    Seems to me the problem with all the data that we have, is that it’s all skewed/tainted.

    It has been tainted by misrepresentations on a large scale such as ascribing deaths to Cov-19 that could be explained by other causes. This is concentrated in some places and less concentrated in other places. Then infection rates are similarly based on tests that are not reliable.

    The numbers appear to have been built up over a period where a required/desired outcome was needed. It may again be required in which case the numbers could be again built up to give legitimacy to a given course of action that is required/desired.

    Worldometers uses raw data which is tainted. Until testing the quality of the data, any conclusions at this point are speculative at best.

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    • #

      Excess deaths Boris. Sometime 40 – 60% higher than the recorded diagnosed Covid deaths. And always worst in cities iwth major outbreaks. In other cities mortality is below normal.

      Plus autopsies on cases showing pulmonary emboli and microclotting and strokes. Covid kills by heart attacks/clots/strokes. Without an autopsy it’s very difficult to determine the cause of death. but we know a wave od excess deaths has travelled right through.

      While there will be some non-covid deaths listed as covid for sure, there are likely many more covid patients not listed because they died at home and were never counted in the tally.

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  • #
    Joe

    There is generally a lot of support for the conservative leaders of the Western world here but there seems to be a deadly silence and a very obvious clash with Jo’s scientific principles when it comes to the conservative reaction to any sort of lock down or restriction of freedoms. While conservative nations in the Middle East were heavily criticized for initially allowing their religious gatherings and practices, some conservative Western nations are pushing for such freedoms right now in the middle of the pandemic. China locked down Wuhan late in January to all local and international travel for 11 weeks and it was only Western nations, generally just repatriating their embassy or consular staff that were able to breach that lock down. Is the US emulating the Swedes but on a larger scale? Jo can you give us your appraisal on the conservative Government’s response in the US?

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    • #
      RickWill

      There are no “greenhouse gases” that are warming the planet. That is a statement of fact. The idea is contrived to fit a simplistic unreal radiation model of the atmosphere. That is not a political statement. It is a fact.

      Taiwan has demonstrated how to control a pandemic in 2020. This is not a political statement it is fact.

      Facts do not have political sides.

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      • #
        Joe

        Of course scientific facts or at least the existence of physical phenomena are independent of politics and religions and any other social constructs but clearly politics selectively aligns itself or maligns itself with these facts and that alignment is not necessarily universal or permanent. While the conservatives in Australia and the US are predominantly strongly opposed to the warmie panic, in places like the UK it was not always the case. Now we have this pandemic and there does not seem to be a consistent response across the political divide which is based on science. So it would seem that it is not possible to choose a Government that is going to be guided by scientific truth regardless of which side of politics you choose.

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        • #

          Good question Joe,

          I would vastly prefer the Trumps and Boris’s running the West, though I fear that both have been misled by the Swamp. This situation has not bought out the best of either, and I am gravely concerned that the Swamp and others would prefer the US to remain semi-crippled by this virus until the US election. If they hurt the economy, it ruins one of Trumps biggest electoral assets.

          I would hope that Trumps fans and supporters start with science, not politics. If, hypothetically, Trumps fans were picking the wrong scientific path, increasing the virus spread, reducing the chance of a quick business recovery, and also missing the best chance they’ve had in 50 years to “Build that Wall” — then they might be working directly against their health, their economy, and their political interests.

          Getting the science wrong would be a big mistake eh?

          Some people are putting politics ahead of the data, but just like the climate debate, reality — whatever it is — will drive outcomes — not hope, or 100 year old flu plans, or junk infectious and economic models.

          The only way to figure out what that reality is, is with hard data and observations, not theories of conspiracies, not with ideologies, or false cliches (like we “never quarantined healthy people” or “it’s the flu”).

          Imagine the irony if Trump should lose partly because Conservatives in America were sticking to the CCP fake line of “it’s just the flu” and it “only kills the old”.

          President Xi would be very happy about that. Who would he rather wins in 2020?

          Meanwhile China knows more about this virus than nearly anywhere, yet they are locking down 100m with only 34 known infections or trivial numbers like that. They are not doing it out of panicked compassion or girly fear.

          They said “it’s the flu” but they act like it’s the plague.

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          • #
            PeterW

            Jo….
            Part of the problem with pointing to China’s reaction is that it is run by the same CCP that gave them the Cultural Revolution and similar jollities. If there is anything with hard data behind it, it is the conclusion that totalitarian governments care very little about their people and are notoriously bad at picking strategies based on what is good for said people.

            Arguing at one point that we are not the kind of society that simply allows people to die, then citing the actions of one that has and does…. seems a little inconsistent.

            Ditto the theory that “Covid-free” nations will not face a series of rolling lock-downs at every “trivial” re-infection, while using the CCP which does, as your example.

            I was a supporter, initially, but arguments like this are making me more sceptical, not the reverse.

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            markx

            “… misled by the Swamp…”

            Trump is very much a product of, and a part of the swamp, and now is an integral part of the swamp.
            Just because most of the swamp actually don’t like the amoral doofus does not make him the solution, even if he does happen to be basically correct on China trade deals, and possibly on the correct side of the climate debate.
            Everything he does Is primarily about enriching himself or his allies, and about widening economic and racial divides to motivate the support of his right wing and religious bases.

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          • #
            Richard Ilfeld

            All American politics is based on a series of lies.
            They used to be the myths of patriotism common to all of us with a political heritage tracing back to the Magna Carta.
            Now it is simply a convenient set of lies; climate change is one of the prominent ones.
            Another is the identity politics of race, and attaching race to a party; it has been the case for many years that people of color vote as a block for
            a single party based on certain beliefs and promises. That they could, if voting as an unattached block, be the deciding swing vote on every single
            issue of public policy yet have never had leadership sufficient to exercise this policy points up the power of lies as voting patterns persist after three generations of
            awful results.
            I see no possibility that the election will be based on a COVID reality. Between now and November is not sufficient time for the few candles of truth to outshine the
            searchlights of narrative; there will be competing campfire stories supported by little more than anecdote and pre-existing belief, with the truth dribbling in later.

            We are just now figuring out what actually happened to us during the Obama administration.

            The world is betting on our better instincts, for our brains are hardly engaged.

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        • #
          RickWill

          Recognising that Taiwan had a thoroughly effective response to the pandemic does not need any political flavour.

          Likewise the Liberals in Canberra and the largely Labour governments in the States were highly aligned in Australia’s response to the CV19 risk. The appropriate response did not require any particularly political persuasion; rather just copy what Taiwan had already proven highly effective.

          The pompous Tegnell in Sweden is still waiting for a peer reviewed paper to guide him on the best approach. Apparently unless it is in a peer reviewed paper it is not science; where have I heard that before! Pompous git!

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  • #
    Raving

    “85 migrant workers test positive in latest Ontario farm outbreak”
    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/london/85-migrant-workers-norfolk-county-coronavirus-1.5592482

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  • #
    WXcycles

    I’ve pointed out previously the UK and Netherlands have coordinated to withhold information on their active cases and recoveries data on worldometer yet they continue to report the other data.

    But now both Spain and Sweden have begun to do exactly he same thing so direct comparisons of their data to other countries can not be made against daily global data elsewhere.

    These coordinated moves are obviously political in nature, so you have to ask what their governments are afraid of? Or trying to hide or escape scrutiny about?

    Maybe this terrible projection has something to do with it, in the case of Spain?

    https://covid19.healthdata.org/spain

    I’m guessing this Sweden projection is a tad optimistic too.

    https://covid19.healthdata.org/sweden

    Sweden’s politicians must realize they’re going to get held accountable at some future point, if this projection does not turn out to be the case, especially if people can keep making direct data comparisons. So eliminate the data and try to maintain a national happy political consensus instead, for as long as possible, seems to be the general plan.

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    • #
      PeterW

      There does not appear to be a standard methodology for distinguishing those who die OF Corona and those who die WITH it. As the great majority of those who die WITH Corona are either of advanced age, have one or more co-morbidities that are likely to lead to death….. or a combination of the two… this distinction is important.

      We currently appear to be making comparisons on the basis of raw data collected using inconsistent methodologies and without correction for confounding factors. In any other field this would rightly be called out as Junk Science and it is hardly fair to blame governments for declining to play that alarmist game.

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    • #
      Aaron Christiansen

      WXCycles: But now both Spain and Sweden have begun to do exactly he same thing

      What same thing?

      What evidence do you have that Sweden are withholding anything? And why did you not post it?

      Sweden’s data is and has always been available here: https://experience.arcgis.com/experience/09f821667ce64bf7be6f9f87457ed9aa

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    PeterW

    What is the infection rate amongst those who are not locked down? If the lock-down is the key to success, then we would expect to see astronomical rates of infection amongst those who have continued to deal with the public en-masse.

    If this is not observed, then what reason can we give that is not also applicable to the majority?

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    Another Ian

    But “The Professor” seems to differ

    “Sweden has “got quite a long way to the same effect” ”

    https://catallaxyfiles.com/2020/06/03/sweden-has-got-quite-a-long-way-to-the-same-effect/

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  • #

    I am pretty sure the final analysis will not be possible before spring of 2022. It could very well be that by that time a lot of countries have surpassed the Swedes.

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    Another Ian

    Sort of O/T BUT

    “Nevermind…Maybe HCQ not so bad.”

    “Bizarre age we live in, where an entire FIELD is hijacked in order to discredit an individual–to the point of killing people.”

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2020/06/03/nevermind-maybe-hcq-not-so-bad/

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  • #
    Eddie

    How did Britain end up with nearly the worst deaths in Europe yet it’s hospitals were never got even near to being overwhelmed?

    Did it just fail to hospitalise over half of all cases that died in need of hospital treatment?

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  • #
    Gary

    “Is Coronavirus Refusing to Die in Sweden? Fraid not, Vultures!”
    Am I living in a parallel universe or something? People seem happy to comment on the Sweden & UK situations from 16,000km away, but the above headline comes today from an English blog – link, graphs, references etc: https://lockdownsceptics.org/

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  • #
    Gerry, England

    When looking at the UK government response you have to remember that they were following their plan to combat an influenza pandemic so every mistake they have made is down to having a plan for the wrong disease. If we didn’t have a media consisting of as many morons as we have in government then they might have made an issue of this but since they insist on only taking verbal information and want to keep trying to find ‘gotcha’ stories they haven’t read the freely available flu pandemic plan. Nor have they gone back to the Blair government to ask why they failed to produce the 2 plans the WHO asked governments to – a flu plan AND a SARS plan. Or why all the intervening governments failed to do their jobs properly and heed the warnings. And then we have the dumping of 15000 hospital patients into unprepared care homes the media missed that one too. Add on 6000 nosocomial deaths due to the failure to use the Nightingale hospitals as isolation units to stop the NHS becoming the root of the infection it now is and perhaps a new cause of death should be included on death certificates – killed by government policy. The people brought the lockdown into place and will shortly be the ones to end it by saying enough. With NHS staff and care home workers free to circulate and mix with more people, an increase in cases is a certainty.

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  • #

    Interesting that the Scandinavian countries are flying over Sweden, but avoiding flying into it, because it didn’t lock down.

    Many readers here including Jo are probably aware of Toby Young, a climate sceptic in England. He’s also a lockdown sceptic: https://lockdownsceptics.org/

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  • #
    Kalm Keith

    Good.

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    Environment Skeptic

    A good link below for any researchers that would like to increase their studies beyond a dubious pandemic of graphs/models using data from i do not know how, or where, here is a good place to start looking for some qualified, cutting edge material in virology and more! :)

    Vincent Racaniello
    55K subscribers
    This channel is all about viruses – videos of my lectures, podcasts, interviews, and more! :)

    From: https://www.youtube.com/user/profvrr/featured

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    Environment Skeptic

    For example, are the Swede’s using a Stevensons Screen to record their corona score/numbers? :)

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    Environment Skeptic

    I tend to wonder about data collection…

    As part of the global effort to have a uniform corona metrology to standardise uniform data collecting/recording protocols, did Sweden collectively record their data according to scientific standard protocols adhered to globally similar to a/the famous and reliable Stevensons Screen?..in effect?

    From: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stevenson_screen

    A Stevenson screen or instrument shelter is a shelter or an enclosure to meteorological instruments against precipitation and direct heat radiation from outside sources, while still allowing air to circulate freely around them.[1] It forms part of a standard weather station and holds instruments that may include thermometers (ordinary, maximum/minimum), a hygrometer, a psychrometer, a dewcell, a barometer, and a thermograph.

    Stevenson screens may also be known as a cotton region shelter, an instrument shelter, a thermometer shelter, a thermoscreen, or a thermometer screen. Its purpose is to provide a standardised environment in which to measure temperature, humidity, dewpoint, and atmospheric pressure. It is white in color to reflect direct solar radiation. The common type of Stevenson screen has a maximum and minimum thermometer for daily readings.

    A Stevenson screen or instrument shelter is a shelter or an enclosure to meteorological instruments against precipitation and direct heat radiation from outside sources, while still allowing air to circulate freely around them.[1] It forms part of a standard weather station and holds instruments that may include thermometers (ordinary, maximum/minimum), a hygrometer, a psychrometer, a dewcell, a barometer, and a thermograph.

    Stevenson screens may also be known as a cotton region shelter, an instrument shelter, a thermometer shelter, a thermoscreen, or a thermometer screen. Its purpose is to provide a standardised environment in which to measure temperature, humidity, dewpoint, and atmospheric pressure. It is white in color to reflect direct solar radiation. The common type of Stevenson screen has a maximum and minimum thermometer for daily readings.

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    Environment Skeptic

    JEN: Jet Engine Nebulisation (JEN).

    Without Stevenson Screens, Corona data quality on airport runways globally will continue to be subject to JEN and thus poor at best.

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    Broadie

    Apologies AD
    I should not have pointed out the smear in the previous post.

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    Environment Skeptic

    RBN: Rotor Blade Nebulisation (RBN).

    Stevenson’s Screens work well to supress RBN when drone pilot operators fail to sterilise said drone rotor blades, or when a drone rotor blade is/are in close proximity to someone infected with corona. .

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