How Trump Ends: A Fantasy

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During the rally in Tulsa, Trump jokes. (Read the following with your best internal Trump voice)

“I know some of you, maybe many of you. Many many. Maybe, I know, many of you will get COVID. The Chinese Flu, I call it. I call it the Chi-Neez flu. I know many many of you will get it because you are here with me today. All crowded in. And boy, do I love to see the crowd. All crowded in together.

Please, though, don’t die before November 3rd, alright? I need you to vote. Not that I need you, really, I’ll win anyway. But it would be nice if you lived long enough to vote.”

Over the next 30 minutes the penny drops. Thousands of pennies drop. The crown starts to leave, then streams out, like Minnesotans to their cars halfway through a Twins game during a bad season.

And from there on it, Trump, all of it, dwindles away.

The penny drops idiom

British, informal

—used to say that someone finally understands something after not understanding it for a time.

Example:

I had to explain it to him three times, but finally the penny dropped.

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676 thoughts on “How Trump Ends: A Fantasy

  1. A fantasy indeed.

    That “penny” will drop 10 to 14 days later, and only then to those Trumpkateers infected who respond with more severity than a case of an ordinary flu and who are not devout enough in their worship of (whatever it is they worship about) the malevolent moronic impeached one to glory in sacrificing themselves for him or his cause (that would be himself).

    1. DiBlasio is telling his contact tracers not to ask if infected people attended protests. Seems against the point of contact tracing, but then again, not sure what you can trace with that information.

    2. If there are cases in Tulsa in the next two weeks, I would certainly be asking if they attended the rally. Again not sure how you can do anything with that info, other than issue a general bulletin.

  2. Whether it is Trump rally participants or protesters, it is not very nice to hope they get COVID-19. Crowds do increase the risk – that is a fact. But I don’t “hope” people who go out to eat get COVID-19. I don’t “hope” protesters (or even rioters) get COVID-19. And I don’t “hope” Trump rally participants get COVID-19.

    1. Re: MikeN “I’m not hoping . . .”

      To modify a Clint Eastwood line in The Unforgiven: “Hoping’s got nothing to do with it.” Reality is what it is and there is no reason to expect that either group will escape the natural effects of who they are and what they do and don’t do.

      I will, however, be sorrier for those people who were infected protesting peacefully for equal justice and an end to murders by the police than for those who are showing undeserved support for the Impeached President whose tardy response, lies, incompetence, and less concern for the health of the American public than for improving his reelection chance led to the U. S. part of the pandemic being much worse than it had to be.

  3. I wonder whether any of these venues have, will, or even have the ability to modify the air exchange system to attempt to lessen the chance of spread? Could any such change actually lessen the chance?

    1. What changes can be made? Something with the filter?
      I read that a restaurant in NYC got ten cases, and they were seated directly in line with the AC flow. If their is AC flowing in a large arena, the hot air will rise, but what happens to the virus?
      Is it better to not have air conditioning and let the heat affect the virus?

  4. RickA, heck I thought you were all for ‘herd immunity’. Now you are saying it isn’t very nice to wish someone is infected with Covid-19. Make up your mind.

    1. I know I suggested deliberately infecting people, particularly for kids and young people, as a means of reaching herd immunity, but has RickA said this, or jut that it was the inevitable outcome?

    2. MikeN, Ricky’s been crapping on about herd immunity from the outset. After our previous discussion, I hope you now see the… impracticality of this concept in our current situation.

    3. MikeN:

      Yes – I have previously suggested a phased approach to reach herd immunity. My thought was to ask for volunteers to be exposed, first among first responders, health care workers, long term care workers, police and fire departments. Then perhaps on a county by county basis in a state. I had also suggested perhaps trying a state by state approach for the country as a whole, so we could use all the first responders from the east coast for the west coast and visa versa.

      I still think we will eventually reach herd immunity levels – it will just take a long time and be random, rather than organized (if we chose to reach it in an organized manner).

    4. Hard to get those first responders moving around, especially with New York State claiming that all those out of staters now owe income taxes to New York, including income earned from other sources.

      I like the idea of medical residents doing an on-site four week rotation in the covid wing.

    5. MikeN:

      Yeah – taxing the out of state first responders would make it harder to volunteer!

      Well it was just an idea I had on the best way to get to herd immunity. Assuming we want to manage it, rather than just get there like they did in 1918-1919.

      I just intuitively believe that it (herd immunity) would happen faster and with less overall death if we managed it rather than just letting nature take its course.

      But I could be wrong (of course)! I am not a doctor or an expert, just a layperson with an opinion.

  5. BBD, you said something about it not being a sane solution to end lockdowns, but I missed anything beyond that.

    1. I showed you some numbers illustrating *why* the herd immunity approach is dangerous nonsense. You might want to go back and read the comment again if you didn’t the first time round.

  6. It seems Oklahoma government officials and health professionals are concerned about the chance of people catching COVID-19 at today’s rally.

    Trump is also concerned — not about minimizing the chance of spreading the virus, but about minimizing his legal exposure if it spreads. Yes, he’ll be handing out maks, but how many will wear them when he refuses to wear one himself?

    Well, they called him Super-spreader
    As he headed to the rally
    Though he swore that he would never make us ill.
    When another two weeks passed
    There were many more cases
    And a great big uproar on The Hill!

    One party raised alarms
    And the other cheered in swarms
    But neither one was making any headway.
    And folks throughout the land
    Had all that they could stand,
    Saying, now it’s high time to end his heyday.

    Those who remember the Chad Mitchell Trio will know what tune goes with this.

  7. From tonight’s brownshirt rally (quote from Trump):

    “When you do testing to that extent, you’re going to find more people. You’re going to find more cases. So I said to my people slow the testing down please.”

  8. I have said it before but it is worth repeating: 99% of Trump’s cult base are being shafted by the policies of him and his Party. Looking at these fools at his rallies is pitiful. Trump is able to push the right buttons of his base with his borderline racist, xenophobic, incendiary rhetoric, while underneath he is laughing at them. The Republican Party has morphed into a parasite for the elite that is draining its host but which is able to get away with it because the host is somehow convinced that the parasite is not that but a mutualist. One just needs to look more closely at Trump’s swamp to see what kind of organisms inhabit it and what their agenda is. But somehow those who swoon at everything the narcissist-in-chief says are blind to it because he says what they want to hear and his hyperbole and lies arouse their inner hate and anger.

  9. RickA, the fatal flaw in your herd immunity approach is that few people will volunteer to become infected. I asked several students at my institute if they would willingly expose themselves to Covid-19 infection and they looked at me like I was crazy for even suggesting it. If 20% are willing to become infected, and that is an extremely optimistic guess, then your herd immunity approach goes out the window immediately. That is unless there is no attempt to flatten the curve via social distancing and lockdowns. The truth is that hardly anyone will volunteer unless they are paid. The risks of serious health issues even after surviving are too great.

    Thus the only way to achieve herd immunity, as me, BBD and countless others have said is with a vaccine. Right now it appears that in places where the first wave is waning due to isolating mechanisms (and that includes Sweden), only 5-10% of populations have Covid-19 antibodies, miles from any herd immunity threshold.

    So herd immunity is out. The key is developing a vaccine and hoping that the virus becomes less virulent over time, as is likely.

    1. > unless there is no attempt to flatten the curve via social distancing and lockdowns.

      The curve is already flattened. We are now at ‘potential second wave’ stage.
      I think properly educated, the volunteer numbers could go up, but it seems unlikely any government would allow such a thing.
      Ask your students if they are upset that they were deliberately sent by their parents to be infected with chickenpox(they may be too young to have had that happen to them).

    2. In Minnesota, about 10% of all cases are health workers anyway. So sure it may be hard to get people to volunteer. But with 80% of all the deaths happening at nursing homes (in Minnesota), I would think that if a bonus was required to get nursing home workers to volunteer, it could be arranged. You know there will be lawsuits, so the nursing homes would probably pay part and perhaps the state could pay part and we could get the nursing home workers all immune. That would cut down on 80% of the deaths we are having in Minnesota.

      Just an idea. It might not be practical. But if you ask, you might be surprised how people respond. Especially since most people probably figure they are going to get it anyway.

      A vaccine is a good thing to hope for – and I do hope for one or more vaccines. But in the meantime, a lot of people are dying in nursing homes (in Minnesota at least). And they have been locked down since March – so you know it is not family visiting that is causing infections. It is probably staff or hospital visits by nursing home patients (bringing it back).

      What if 60-70% of the world gets COVID-19 anyway? Isn’t a managed approach to herd immunity at least worth looking at?

    3. The curve is already flattened.

      I think that depends on which state you are in.

      Ask your students if they are upset that they were deliberately sent by their parents to be infected with chickenpox

      This level of false equivalence does not do you any favours.

  10. Re: MikeN “Hard to get those first responders moving around, especially with New York State claiming that all those out of staters now owe income taxes to New York”

    The word “claim” presupposes that there is some doubt about the matter. In this case, it is a matter of fact that some states pay more in taxes to the Federal government than they get back in federal support and others pay less. One state in which I lived got back $1.25 for every dollar it paid in federal tax. Seems like a bargain to me.

    If you remember back to Hurricane Sandy and it effect on NY, NJ, etc., some Southern states’ Republican representatives in Congress objected to sending relief to those states even though Southern states (many net gainers in re tax dollars) get plenty of Federal relief when they are hit by hurricanes, which is quite often for some.

    The above naturally engendered some animosity between “maker” and “taker” states (to rework a Mitt Romney campaign phrase). Natural as this is, it is clear to rational people that when an area (whatever it is called) is part of a greater union, it is not necessary for taxes to balance out as long as the union is greater than the mere sum of its parts in some important way(s). Ideally, there should be some sort of balance over longer periods of time in tax money or in some other way (culture and military and other service perhaps).

    1. The trump group also neglected to put a ‘I am over 18’ check on the Tulsa sign-up screen. No telling how much info from minors they now have. And Parscale made a long rambling statement about the low numbers, stating that

      the phony ticket requests (alledged to have been made by “tik-tokers” and others) never figured into our planning. We weed out thousands of bogus numbers. Attendance is always first-come, first-served

      so first the right claimed attendance (about 6200, but official count) was low because of hanky panky with by the infamous “left”, now parscale is essentially saying it was poor turnout because people didn’t want to come (entrance is first-come, first-served, numbers are low with nobody turned away: people didn’t want to be there).

      Having a crowd this small has to hurt as much as his laughingly small inauguration crowd a few years ago did.

    2. Requiring out of state workers who work in NYS pay taxes is also written into New York’s tax laws. It’s not a late decision, as mikeN tried to imply with his “now they…”. (But when has he ever been honest?)

    3. >In this case, it is a matter of fact that some states pay more in taxes to the Federal government than they get back in federal support and others pay less.

      Irrelevant to states taxing workers from out of state who came in on an emergency basis.

  11. From what I gleaned from some news accounts early this a. m., Trump’s big Tulsa rally fell kind of flat:
    > Six staff members who’d been in Tulsa for about a week tested positive for the virus.
    > It rained on the crowds outside the day before and
    > a Black Lives Matter black woman (with tickets) was arrested for exercising her 1st Amendment right to protest.
    > The venue was only about 1/3 full and
    > the Impeached (and guilty) President put his hoof in his mouth while rambling through an even less intelligible and even less intelligent fogscreen in an attempt to avoid any blame for anything and lie about his accomplishments and the sins of the Democrats.

    1. >Six staff members who’d been in Tulsa for about a week tested positive for the virus.

      That suggests the problem wasn’t the rally, but Tulsa.

    2. That suggests the problem wasn’t the rally, but Tulsa.

      The curve not so flat in Tulsa, eh?

      And don’t be gratuitously stupid / dishonest. The rally will spread infections.

    3. That suggests the problem wasn’t the rally, but Tulsa.

      The fact that it was a cluster of Trump staffers that size suggests that the infection process started before they hit Tulsa.

      And by the way, if the problem was Tulsa then the rally WAS a problem because most of the attendees were from Tulsa and its environs. You’ve once again scored an own-goal.

    4. >the infection process started before they hit Tulsa.

      Agreed this is most likely. I hadn’t heard of Tulsa as a hotspot, just that cases were up.

      > if the problem was Tulsa then the rally WAS a problem because most of the attendees were from Tulsa and its environs. You’ve once again scored an own-goal.

      Whether Tulsa is the problem, I expect there to be more cases because of the rally. Hopefully the attendees are on the healthy side and the impact will be minor.

  12. MikeN, most states are still in the first wave. The infection curve was never flattened. If you think going from 30,000 to 20,000 infections daily nationwide is ‘flattening the curve’ then your analytical skills are definitely lacking.

    1. Yes, that is exactly what flattening the curve means. Go back to the original charts used to explain ‘two weeks to slow the spread’.
      30,000 was expected to grow to beyond hospital capacity.

    2. Bernard you’ve also misunderstood what ‘flattening the curve’ means. The expectation was the initial numbers would be rising to an even higher peak. Flattening the curve cut off the higher peak and spread it out over time.
      If the numbers keep rising to a new peak, then they have merely delayed the curve rather than flattened it. However, number of infections detected is not the proper measure for this, but hospitalizations. The goal was to reduce burden on hospitals.
      Actually stopping it would have required a response like Asia, which Europe and US failed to do.

    3. Bernard you’ve also misunderstood what ‘flattening the curve’ means.

      Stop bullshitting.

      The purpose of lockdowns is to prevent infections and at the same time allow the virus to burn out in the population. Together, these effects reduce total hospital admissions and hopefully allow the health service to cope.

      If lockdown is lifted too early, with the virus still in general circulation, there WILL BE a second peak. It may take several weeks or even months to emerge, but it will come.

      This is why what is happening in the UK and the US and elsewhere – against direct scientific advice – is criminal.

    4. Bernard you’ve also misunderstood what ‘flattening the curve’ means.

      No, I haven’t.

      You obviously have a parsing/comprehension problem. Reread what I said.

      Minimisation of active infection cases is intended to ensure that medical treatment resources aren’t overstretched. The Trump administration’s complete abrogation of responsibility and its denial of the severity of the coronavirus problem has meant that cases are escalating across the south and west of the USA, to the point that medical resources in some areas will soon be overwhelmed.

      The USA will likely see record numbers of daily infections before the end of June, and consequent record daily deaths soon after. This reflects that the Trump kakistocracy is not currently flattening the curve…

  13. Re MikeN “Irrelevant to states taxing workers from out of state who came in on an emergency basis.”
    =
    I read your post too quickly it seems. I was thinking you were making a different point entirely. My error.

    It may be that the rationale for collecting state income tax on people from out of state working there may be based on the idea that if you are working in a state you are spending significant time there and using the facilities and laws of the state in which you are employed during that time. Different states have different minimum wages and there also may be significant differences in the cost-of-living.

    Re: MikeN “That suggests the problem wasn’t the rally, but Tulsa.”
    =
    Considering the 10 to 14 day incubation time commonly mentioned, the initial infection may have occurred elsewhere and those six people may have been contributing to the Tulsa increase rather than just part of it. My point in bringing that up is to contrast it with the Impeached President’s continuous attempts to convince his base (and anyone else dumb enough to believe him) that the virus was fading away so that having a large indoor rally was perfectly reasonable. As it turns out, even the number of infected people in his actual employ and vicinity is growing
    =

  14. It depends where you are. In Arizona, Florida, North Carolina and a few other states hospitals are near bursting point. Yesterday I read that R0 is above 1.0 in 30 states. Unless this changes, the first wave is not over.

    1. According to fire officials there were fewer than 6200 people in trump’s “make assholes great again” rally.

      Yes, numbers are spiking in Florida, Alabama, and a bunch of other states, dedicated liars like the one posting here notwithstanding. Tuscaloosa County in Alabama has every ICU bed occupied right now.

      Interesting graph here.

      https://www.google.com/search?channel=tus2&client=firefox-b-1-d&q=covid+numbers+in+florida

      Florida is especially bad since we now know that DeSantis has been ordering the state DOH to lie about the numbers for some time — hence the absurdly high “flu” numbers for the last few months.

      Not that the US is the only place where things are going the wrong way. Pakistan is currently recording more cases per day (21.6 per million residents) than all but a couple European countries — and testing in Pakistan is worse than it is here, astounding as that may be. Researchers are estimating that Dhaka, Bangladesh, alone could have up to 750,000 cases.

      And Sunday, June 19, WHO recorded the largest single day jump seen yet in worldwide cases.

      mikeN and rickA can lie and ignore data all they like (and boy, do they like to lie and ignore data), but none of this is good.

  15. Yes indeed Dean, MikeN and RickA are seasoned fibbers. MikeN is trying to suggest that a curve ‘flattening’ at over 30,000 infections daily is an achievement. It is quite the opposite. Given how infection rates have decreased by around 90% or more in Europe, the US performance is a joke. As I said, 30 US states have R0 values > 1.0; most European countries are around 0.6 or lower. And death rates everywhere are vastly undercounted; in the US by now well over 150,000 are dead from Covid-19. Given that Florida is home to many retired people, there is little doubt that they are fiddling their mortality and infection numbers to downplay the pandemic.

    1. In Florida, they put an emphasis on moving nursing home patients to hospitals. In many states it was the reverse. Both to get hospital bed space cleared, and from the hospital side, to increase revenue collection after they reach the max payout for that patient.

  16. Apparently two con men are claiming they’ve installed a device that kills “99.9% of the covid” in the venue where trump’s next event for the deplorables is supposed to be.

    The ability for thought has never been a trait of these jokers.

    1. Re: kills 99% of the virus

      Ah, that would leave the hardiest behind. Get ready for a real big 2nd wave if and when we somehow slip out of the first wave.

    2. I’m searching for a Youtube video of this device in action. I saw it about a month ago involving the Indian actor Chiranjeevi meeting industry people at his house.
      I couldn’t believe people fell for this.

  17. Not having done enough to overstress hospital staff and facilities already, the Impeached President is taking his message on to another city that every problem he’s created or failed to mitigate and every misstep he’s made are somehow somebody else’s fault. The next stop is Phoenix Arizona, yet another place where COVID-19 cases are already spiking. And he will be bringing an entourage with him, possibly, even likely, based on the recent past, containing several people who already have and can spread the virus.

    The best outcome for the country (and me personally; I have family members residing in the Phoenix area) would be an even smaller turnout of Trumpkateers and maybe some boos when the I. P. once again verbally shows his lack of empathy for any damage his rallies inflict on the people of the city.

  18. BBD, the original IMHE model was far off, though now the total deaths isn’t too far off. This model assumed social distancing and other measures.
    The slogan of the lockdowns was frequently reported as two weeks to stop the spread, but it was really two weeks to slow the spread.
    The stated purpose at the time was to reduce burden on hospitals, spreading out infections over time. There was hope it would burn out the disease, but that was not on the publicized chart at the time illustrating the need for lockdowns.

    1. The purpose of lockdowns is as I stated: to reduce infections; to reduce the prevalence of the virus in the population; to prevent health services being overwhelmed. Whatever garbled misinformation was fed to the American people, by whom or when is utterly irrelevant to the facts as stated above and in my previous comment.

      The evidence that a second wave is building is now overwhelming (see Germany, South Korea, more than half the US States etc. ) You can crap on as long as you like, but the virus will resurge as soon as relaxations in the lockdown permit it to.

      This is the problem with adhering to a lot of righting charlatanism and lies instead of respecting the facts. You end up getting swatted by reality.

    2. I’m not sure what you’re arguing. Of course relaxations in lockdown will allow the virus to spread more easily and will increase infections.

  19. Seems the white house is planning to smear their failures in dealing with covid-19 onto the CDC (CDC wasn’t perfect, but if the shit-stain in chief had heeded advice instead of ignoring it, things would have been a lot better).

    No mikeN, “two weeks” was not the time period stated for lockdowns. Stop making shit up.

    This was discussed April 3.

    The administration has consistently shown a desire to underplay the severity of whatever is coming. And they’re constantly adjusting that — as it becomes harder to deny the reality will be worse than what they’ve conditioned people for,” said Jeremy Konyndyk, a senior policy fellow at the Center for Global Development.
    Konyndyk said he and other experts he’s discussed the matter with believe an “intensive period of social distancing and a national semi-voluntary lockdown” will last for months.

    From March 17:

    “I think this idea … that if you close schools and shut restaurants for a couple of weeks, you solve the problem and get back to normal life — that’s not what’s going to happen,” says Adam Kucharski, an epidemiologist at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and author of The Rules of Contagion, a book on how outbreaks spread. “The main message that isn’t getting across to a lot of people is just how long we might be in this for.”

    Very easy to find experts saying things would last a long time — so quit with the ‘two weeks’ crap you either made up or found on some conspiracy site.

    1. Er, *we* aren’t responsible for Trump’s lies and misrepresentations.

      Nor do they alter the facts about what lockdowns are intended to achieve – if they are allowed to last long enough and not removed prematurely by ideologues and idiots.

    2. Yes mikeN, people in the know never said 2 weeks, despite your little bit. You enjoy your fantasy world while adults talk about what happened.

    3. So they were lying to the country about the duration of the lockdowns, just like with the masks?

    4. So they were lying to the country about the duration of the lockdowns, just like with the masks?

      ‘They’ ?

      Trump was lying, about it. Everybody else understood that the lockdown would need to be months, not weeks.

      Your attempts to conflate Trump’s lies with the medical profession’s position are desperate.

  20. >The USA will likely see record numbers of daily infections before the end of June, and consequent record daily deaths soon after. This reflects that the Trump kakistocracy is not currently flattening the curve…

    You are correct we were talking about different things. You are talking about current while I was referring to past tense when ‘flatten the curve’ was first used to justify the lockdowns. That flattening happened, and better than predicted by IHME model.
    Currently, I doubt the death numbers will reach a new peak. They are still way below the original peak. I have been following the inaccurate CDC daily death count which has gone from a peak of 2600s to recently as low as 300s and 410 today. It gets as high as 900. We’ll see if the death toll rises with the increase in cases, but with a younger profile on current cases(FL has gone from median 65 to median 35), I wouldn’t expect much of an increase.

    1. Re: MikeN “I was referring to past tense when ‘flatten the curve’ was first used to justify the lockdowns. That flattening happened, and better than predicted by IHME model.”

      1) I believe that whatever “flattening” that occurred was not really an overall flattening for the nation but occurred in states where testing was more prevalent and stay-at-home and masking rules were instituted earlier and followed by more people.allow Many states, on the other hand, for instance those with low populations and large meat-packing plants, did little or nothing to avoid spread of the virus and some of those governors actually fought against doing such.

      2) The idea that predictions of the behavior of a new virus and of its effects on people who have never before encountered it can be accurate enough to declare specific time periods (such as two weeks) to attain different stages is ridiculous don’t you think? The experts I remember hearing were clear that such periods were meant to be continually revised as data was obtained, not firm deadlines. And of course, the Impeached President and his followers got bored and stopped paying any attention to what was actually happening and decided to “open the country” with the result that, for example, compared with the EU, whose curve has actually flattened, the U. S. curve (omitting NY) never did and is currently climbing steeply.

      https://www.cnn.com/videos/us/2020/06/22/united-states-europe-coronavirus-covid-19-pandemic-comparison-sanjay-gupta-ldn-vpx.cnn

    1. That thread considers the change in the median age of infection over time, not the reason(s) that daily coronavirus infections are increasing.

      And the principle reason that coronavirus infections are increasing is that the restrictions that limit its spread between people have been prematurely removed.

    2. Agreed. I submit that it is not as necessary to worry about increased caseload because it may be catching milder cases due to contact tracing and more liberal testing(and there were cases undetected before because of insufficient testing).
      I would worry about hospitalizations rather than cases.

      Having lots of mild cases is a good thing in my opinion, especially if spreading can be controlled to prevent higher risk people from being infected. That last part is unlikely though, other than the high-risk are a little more aware.

  21. Well, according to the news tonight that the European Union is considering banning travelers from the U. S. even as they are opening up their countries once again. Since our numbers are jumping up to 30,000 cases per day in many places, we are to be lumped with other nations who have failed to control their COVID-19 problem. This puts us in with Brazil (whose head of state is a Trump clone) and Russia (admired by Trump and possibly his master). Our problem won’t be illegal immigrants, it will be to find a place to which to emigrate after Trump finishes with us.

    Meanwhile the Trumpkateers are streaming into an enclosed rally venue in Phoenix — lots of shouting and close packing and few people wearing masks — to see if they can make the Phoenix area COVID spike even higher and longer lasting. Donald Trump and his flock, Making America Grim Again.

    Oh yeah, and the virus is hitting younger people harder now. That’ll make our economy really tick over if we ever get it going, won’t it?

    1. Re my: “to 30,000 cases per day in many places”

      Sorry, that part of the sentence was supposed to have been removed when I edited. I should probably not post when I am tired and trying to beat a deadline.

    2. The real question is why trump and his supporters (as demonstrated in multiple spam posts by two of them here) are so intent on arguing that the effed-up ineffective response to covid wasn’t trump’s fault and even if it was it doesn’t matter because covid isn’t really a threat, and anyway it’s been defeated now. Are they that dedicated to lying?

  22. BBD:

    Lockdowns are good for controlling the number of people in the hospital and the ICU.

    But there was never a chance that we could lockdown long enough to permanently lower the number of infections. All we did was delay the infections to a later date.

    So we will see infections rise as restrictions are continued to be eased. We might see a drop from the summer and then again infections will rise in the fall.

    Give the COVID-19 virus circulating worldwide, it is impossible to lockdown long enough to prevent any future infections.

    Which is why I think a managed herd immunity approach makes a great deal of sense.

    Unless of course we do get a vaccine this fall (I hope this is the case).

    1. “Which is why I think a managed herd immunity approach”

      Maybe unicorns will make it happen.

      What an ignorant SOB you are.

    2. Lockdowns are good for controlling the number of people in the hospital and the ICU.

      But there was never a chance that we could lockdown long enough to permanently lower the number of infections. All we did was delay the infections to a later date.

      Nope.

      If the lockdown had been kept in place for a few more weeks – just another three or four – then the number of infections in the population would have fallen to manageable levels. What does this mean? It means with a fully developed test, trace and quarantine system in place the inevitable local flare-ups could have been contained.

      That is what all this has always been about.

      That is why testing is SO VERY IMPORTANT.

      I’m beyond tired of trying to explain it to you. Everybody I know understands this. Nobody I know required me to explain it to them. They just read the explainers that are out there, everywhere, on their phones.

    3. RickA, New Zealand announced they eradicated the virus.
      I think it was possible for lockdowns to stop things if the US had reacted like the countries closer to China who were used to this.

    4. Twelve weeks couldn’t do it, but 15 or 16 weeks would?

      All while being told that two weeks was what was needed.

    5. MikeN:

      Being an island is very helpful for isolation. But I doubt very much New Zealand will be able to keep COVID-19 away while it spreads worldwide. They will have to basically allow no travel to New Zealand for the duration. I doubt they can do that and so I suspect COVID-19 will be back to New Zealand.

      Maybe I am wrong and I hope for the best for New Zealand.

      Meanwhile in the USA, we are seeing the virus spread and it will probably keep spreading until we reach herd immunity. I think it would be more efficient and safer to reach herd immunity in a planned fashion – but we can also reach herd immunity naturally (as they did in 1918-1919). A vaccine would help us reach herd immunity much faster so it is a race to see which comes first – herd immunity from a potential vaccine or herd immunity by population illness and recovery (getting antibodies the natural way).

      I still think a managed herd immunity approach would be the way to go. First ask for volunteers among first responders, health care workers and long term care workers. Then only allow the recovered to work with the sick and old and use the pool of recovered to help with hospitals in states with their system overburdened. Let the level of sickness rise to just below the hospital limit and then manage it until herd immunity is reached.

      Or let herd immunity develop willy nilly.

    6. Twelve weeks couldn’t do it, but 15 or 16 weeks would?

      Every week in lockdown denies the virus a chance to infect. Every week in lockdown reduces the number of infections. All explained, over and over in this thread. You’re just trolling now.

      All while being told that two weeks was what was needed.

      Only by Donald, who was lying.

      You are just trolling now.

  23. Off topic, but:

    There’s never good news from the scum in the modern rebublican/libertarian/white supremacist/neo-nazi nexus, but this is very bad news.

    More bad news. The first clues it’s bad: Graham and Cotton are the primary drivers (although lead slimeball Barr has been pushing for something like this for some time). The biggest line of pure crap:

    ““Our legislation respects and protects the privacy rights of law-abiding Americans,” said Graham, the Judiciary Committee chairman.”

    There is one hugely misleading bit in this story. Here:

    “Earlier this year, the FBI and Attorney General asked Apple to unlock the phone of a suspected naval base shooter, but the company declined.”

    a) They didn’t “decline” — Apple could not get into the phone’s encryption — they don’t have the key, as they shouldn’t.
    b) The neglect to say that Apple did turn over several gigabytes of information, including messages, the shooter had stored his Icloud account — the part of it for which they did have the key.

    The amount of information government and law enforcement agencies has been getting from everyone has expanded exponentially since the (dishonestly named) Patriot Act was passed. We better hope this bill goes nowhere.

    https://www.engadget.com/warrantproof-encryption-republican-senate-bill-172718197.html?fbclid=IwAR2Dp1dft3o89vSG7MItIeak1DH8A2_UymQUZkALsYnrEe6ZC5UOf1k5myY

  24. There is no such thing as a ‘managed her immunity approach’ RickA so I wish you’d shut up about it. The only herd immunity approach now is a chaotic free-for-all-do-as-you-please approach whereby social distancing is ignored and industrial numbers of people die. This seems to be the approach being adopted by Covid-19 deniers, extreme libertarians, assorted right wing wackos and conspiracy theorists. You are not going to find many people of any age, including under 40, who are going to willingly infect themselves with Covid-19 as a form of herd immunity altruism. Those with any common sense realize full well that although the virus may not kill you, it puts you through a hellish nightmare experience and can leave long-lasting physiological damage.

    So managed herd immunity is a practical impossibility. Indeed, herd immunity will only work once there is a vaccine. Without one, forget it. There will be no return to normal until a vaccine is produced and/or the virus becomes much less virulent.

    1. I don’t agree. We can manage herd immunity. We can manage asteroid impacts. Sure, we cannot manage supernova or getting hit by a beam from a quasar (not yet anyway). But give us time and we will be able to manage that also (just move the planet). It is just a matter of time.

      Why we can even manage to replace all our fossil fuel with nuclear (if we wanted to that is).

    2. I don’t agree. We can manage herd immunity.

      Counterfactual assertion, yet again.

      You are going to get wiped out by your lies this time.

      Remember the arithmetic?

      US population = 328m

      1% of US population = 3.28m

      CV cases reported in US to date = 2.45m

      Assume under-reporting means this is only 10% of actual US cases so the real total = 25m infections

      Percent of US population infected = 25 000 000 / 3 280 000 = 7.6

      So about *7.6%* of US population infected so far

      At least **92%** still to go.

      And Donald The Liar has scrapped lockdown.

      And still you are at it with your innumerate bullshit about ‘managing herd immunity’.

      Get a fucking clue.

    3. BBD:

      Recall that we only need 67% of the population (2/3) to be immune to reach herd immunity. So we are actually 11.38% of the way there (based on your numbers).

      Perhaps when we are 20 or 30% of the way to herd immunity you will agree that managing it is better than not managing it. Or perhaps not . . .

      I think we can do better than the natural way of achieving herd immunity. But I appear to be a small minority of one here.

  25. RickA, (or should I call you rockhead), herd immunity only works when there is a vaccine. Moreover, given that the coronavirus is a very severe cold virus, and cold viruses are constantly evolving and mutating, then immunity, if indeed there is any from it, may be very transient. Moreover there is growing evidence that those who were only lightly affected by Covid-19 may have developed no immunity to it at all. The problem is that the virus is novel and we are still learning about its pathology. You write as if everything is known about it.

    Right now, the percentage of people with Covid-19 antibodies in the US, Spain, France, the UK, Sweden, Belgium etc. is 10 per cent or less. To reach herd immunity with this virus requires 60-70 per cent of the population become infected and within a narrow time frame. Managing herd immunity means encouraging everyone under 65 or without underlying medical conditions to become infected. The problem is that 99% of people DO NOT want to become infected, and a significant number of these people will take some measures to avoid it (me included). The virus has quite serious effects on the health of many people who survive it: lung damage, trouble breathing, lack of energy, and damage to other organs. Expecting people to play some form of Russian Roulette with their health is doomed to fail.

    How many qualified people are pushing the herd immunity line? Hardly any. You can count them on the fingers of one hand. As usual, you are wrong. But you must be used to that.

    1. Jeffh:

      According to wikipedia “Herd immunity (also called herd effect, community immunity, population immunity, or social immunity) is a form of indirect protection from infectious disease that occurs when a large percentage of a population has become immune to an infection, whether through vaccination or previous infections, thereby providing a measure of protection for individuals who are not immune.”

      Note the “or previous infections” part of the definition sentence.

      Here – read it for yourself:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herd_immunity

      I am afraid you don’t know what you are talking about.

    2. a form of indirect protection from infectious disease that occurs when a large percentage of a population has become immune to an infection, whether through vaccination or previous infections, thereby providing a measure of protection for individuals who are not immune.”

      This is a NOVEL virus, you blithering idiot. There is either no natural immunity or it is minimal. You are framing your bullshit as if there were either a vaccine or a high level of natural immunity and wrong on both counts.

      But meh. Facts.

    3. BBD:

      It is my understanding that if a person gets COVID-19 and recovers they are immune to COVID-19. It is my understanding that this is the “prior infection” they are referring to in the definition of herd immunity.

      In other words if enough people get immune by getting sick and recovering (say 67% of the population), eventually herd immunity will protect the rest of the population.

      So herd immunity is not obtained solely by vaccines, but sometimes by enough people getting sick and developing antibodies the natural way. That is how humans defeated every prior corona virus – naturally (because there is no vaccine for any corona virus).

  26. Re: “herd immunity the natural way”

    Did that work for the Black Death of the Middle Ages. I haven’t read a lot about it but it seems to have ended up killing a large fraction of the Eurasian and North African population. Outbreaks occurred over the centuries (14th to 17th and even the 19th). Is that the kind of “herd immunity” that is being discussed? If so, it doesn’t sound so great does it? (Make America Grieve Again).

    One bright spot I’ve read about was that it killed so many of the working class (including both relatively unskilled and skilled workers) that the survivors were in such demand that the were able to raise their incomes and improve working conditions.

  27. Oh look, US is spiking again…

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/jun/24/americans-coronavirus-covid-19-cases-increase?

    US records highest one-day total in coronavirus cases since April

    The US has recorded a one-day total of 34,700 new Covid-19 cases, the highest level since late April, when the number peaked at 36,400, according to the count kept by Johns Hopkins University.

    A coronavirus resurgence is wiping out two months of progress in the US and sending infections to worrying new levels in southern and western states.

    Administrators and health experts warned on Wednesday that politicians and a public that, in many cases, is tired of being cooped up are letting a disaster unfold.

    While new infections have been declining steadily in early hotspots such as New York and New Jersey, several other states set single-day records this week, including Arizona, California, Mississippi, Nevada, Texas and Oklahoma.

    North Carolina and South Carolina joined some other states in breaking hospitalization records.

    “People got complacent,” said Marc Boom, the chief executive of the Houston Methodist hospital system. “And it’s coming back and biting us, quite frankly.”

    With the US death toll creeping towards 122,000 on Wednesday, and confirmed cases at almost 2.4 million for the US, a widely-cited University of Washington computer model of the outbreak projected nearly 180,000 deaths by 1 October.

    Stocks slid on Wall Street as the news dampened hopes for a quick economic turnaround. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost more than 700 points for a drop of 2.7%. The broader S&P 500 fell 2.6%.

    Rightwing lies kill American citizens and wreck the US economy.

    And you muppets keep on cheering it along, inflicting appalling, unforgivable collateral damage on your fellow Americans.

    1. And you believe this would not have happened if we had stayed locked down for another three or four weeks? Do you think if we had stayed locked down, you would have in three or four weeks said we just need a few more weeks to bring the virus under control?

  28. Greg, sorry for triggering auto-moderation again with another f-bomb. I will try to be more temperate in future 🙂

  29. Thanks BBD. As I said, RickA is a complete rockhead.

    The virus is novel. RickA writes as if we know everything about it, and that, once infected and recovered, a person has 100% long-term immunity. Not remotely true. We still hardly know anything about this virus. Simply letting it go through populations is madness: it would lead to a massive death toll, overwhelm hospitals, and many survivors would have serious permanent physiological damage.

    This is why, as I said, one can count on the fingers of one hand professional epidemiologists who support the kind of nonsense spewed here by RickA.

    It is you, RickA, who does not have a clue what you are talking about. Please desist.

  30. Here is an education site which discussed herd immunity:

    https://www.jhsph.edu/covid-19/articles/achieving-herd-immunity-with-covid19.html

    See in particular this quote – “As with any other infection, there are two ways to achieve herd immunity: A large proportion of the population either gets infected or gets a protective vaccine.”

    I am referring to managing herd immunity by managing the “large proportion” of the population getting infected. 98% of the people who get sick don’t even require hospitalization. The latest surge is mostly younger people – and probably will not overstress the hospitals (we will see). It is the old, already sick and obese who are at highest risk – and they should be isolated from exposure. The young (under 60) are fairly safe.

    I am not saying it would be easy – but it could be done.

    We cannot stop the virus from circulating and we cannot all stay isolated from each other – we already tried that for several months. It is a tool, but so is managing who gets sick, how many get sick and where they get sick (what state they are in).

    So managed herd immunity is a real thing and could be done (if we wanted).

    Otherwise, we are just letting the virus move randomly through the population until 67% of the people get it and recover (or die).

    1. dean:

      I am not citing this article to support my position that it might be a good idea to manage herd immunity.

      It is more basic than that (for Jeff and Tyvor). They don’t understand that herd immunity can be obtained without a vaccine.

      This article supports that concept for the newbies.

      Herd immunity can be obtained by a lot of people getting sick and then getting better. Jeff and Tyvor need to learn that and that is why I cited that article (and because people don’t trust wikipedia).

    2. No rickA, it really doesn’t. The message is that without a vaccine we’re screwed. The closest it comes to your ignorant position is

      But unless we want hundreds of millions of Americans to get infected with SARS-CoV-2 (what it would take to establish herd immunity in this country), life is not likely to be completely “normal” again until a vaccine can be developed and widely distributed.

      I’m not surprised you’re lying again — nor am I surprised you will be “offended” that people don’t by your intentionally dishonest take on the article.

    3. dean:

      I guess your definition of “screwed” and mine are different.

      This pandemic isn’t as bad as the Spanish flu! So things have been worse in the past and they are better now.

      True the case fatality rate is 5% worldwide and in the USA. But we know the number of infected is many times the confirmed infections. Scientists estimate at least 10 times the number of confirmed cases, based on blood test data.

      So the infection death rate is .5% and probably less.

      Currently, only 1% of the worldwide active cases are serious (so 99% are mild). That number has been falling pretty steadily (it used to be 2% serious). Probably because of the age of the people currently infected.

      But lets say the IFR is .5% – that is 5 times worse than seasonal flu – so bad but not “screwed” bad.

      So you should try to calm down a bit.

      Even if .5% of the entire world population dies from COVID-19, that is only 40 million people. Think of how good that will be for carbon emissions! Maybe they will all be conservative types? I bet you wouldn’t mind that.

      But I doubt that .5% of the entire world population will die from COVID-19 – I bet it will be a lot less than that. I bet it will be 8 million or less.

      So that is not good, but certainly not “screwed” (unless you happen to be one of the dead).

      So I hope all of the vaccines in trial do work out. But even if there is no vaccine – we are certainly not “screwed”. The world has been through this type of pandemic many times before and we were not “screwed” then and we are not “screwed” now. Try not to panic.

  31. It may not be the case that surviving a bout of Covid-19 is the last problem you will have with it. Here are two recent news reports indicating that, especially if you have a severe case there may also be severe aftereffects.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-52506669

    https://blog.ochsner.org/articles/neurological-side-effects-of-coronavirus-Covid-19

    And don’t be too deeply lulled by the supposed “rarity” of an such an effect; even a small percentage of a very large population is a large number, 1% of a million is still 10,000 people.

    Unless you’re feeling real lucky, I’d suggest taking precautions suggested by the experts against infection and living as long as you can. Forget any notion of helping to achieve herd immunity. Let Trump and his Trumpkateers do that. (The Secret Service is helping; it is now apparently riddled with dozens of cases.)

  32. >Every week in lockdown denies the virus a chance to infect. Every week in lockdown reduces the number of infections.

    You gave a specific timeline of another three or four weeks would have put the virus under control, in a way that it is currently not under control.
    I see no explanation for what makes 15 or 16 weeks different from 12 weeks in this regard.

    1. I see no explanation for what makes 15 or 16 weeks different from 12 weeks in this regard.

      Just as infections ramp up exponentially, they disappear exponentially during a lockdown. An extra month makes a world of difference.

      The goal is to get R < 1. The lockdown was lifted before this was the case. So, total public policy failure. Bye bye lots of American lives and the US economy.

  33. RickA, and I repeat: you are assuming that people who have been infected by Covid-19 have long-term immunity against it which is pure speculation. We do not know enough about the virus to make any kinds of predictions about immunity: if it occurs, how long it lasts, etc. As I said, there is evidence that people who were lightly infected and experienced no or only mild symptoms have no immunity at all against the virus.

    Managed herd immunity is an illusion because it presupposes that governments will knowingly pursue policies ensuring that vast numbers of people are unwittingly exposed to Covid-19 to push infection rates up. Alternatively, they can use the same strategy as the government of Anon-7 did in the Star Trek episode whereby two planets fight virtual wars and victims are randomly selected and must walk into a disintegration chamber. RickA similarly appears to think that governments should choose citizens to be deliberately infected with Covid-19 and to be rounded up to walk without resistance into infection chambers. Isn’t that how you ‘manage’ herd immunity, RickA? Because you are not going to get very many people voluntarily agreeing to become infected by a novel pathogen that is potentially lethal or can leave you with severe physical disabilities and where little or nothing is known about immunity.

    As usual RickA, you are way, way out in right field. You are effectively clueless.

    1. Currently listening to the Veep spout lie after lie about what trump did right from the start to stop the virus. Apparently trump immediately stopped all traffic from overseas and immediately urged people to take things seriously.

      Who TF believes this crap?

  34. Re: RickA “It is more basic than that (for Jeff and Tyvor). They don’t understand that herd immunity can be obtained without a vaccine.”

    You are confused; it is not my argument that herd immunity can NOT be obtained without a vaccine. My argument is that gaining herd immunity without a vaccine is not possible without condemning many people to suffering and even death months (or more) earlier than necessary. (Others have pointed out that we do not yet know how long immunity after recovering from Covid-19 lasts, making herd immunity without a vaccine problematical.) More months of life may mean little to you but that is not my opinion and I have no doubt that many people agree with me. As I commented recently, herd immunity did not stop the Black Death from cruelly killing a significant proportion of the population of Eurasia and North Africa. I have also commented recently on serious aftereffects of Covid-19 that should not be ignored in the discussion of herd immunity the natural way.

    1. Ah – very good. Jeffh says it is impossible without a vaccine. So it is good to know you agree that herd immunity is possible without a vaccine. That is the science and Jeffh (who is a scientist) doesn’t know that. I am only an electrical engineer, not a doctor or medical person and even I know that basic fact. So good for you!

      Of course, a vaccine is preferable to doing it the natural way. If only we get one or two or three.

      Given 40,000 confirmed cases a day (which means 400,000 per day in the wild) – in 90 days that is 36,000,000 million cases. That is 16.38% of what is needed for herd immunity. If we don’t get a vaccine until early next year, we might be more than 1/2 way to herd immunity – and in a completely un-managed willy nilly fashion.

  35. Greg – I have a post stuck in moderation. A later one has posted, but the stuck one has not. Perhaps it is to provocative – dealing with how many people could die from COVID-19?

  36. BBD, you mention 7.6%. The NBA has done testing, and found 16 of 302 testing positive.
    There were 10 who tested positive in March. That comes out to almost the same number, though there may have been more infected in between.

    If 10-1 is on the table, with 40,000 cases daily that is 15 million by the end of July. Now we are close to 40 million.

    JeffH, I don’t know about RickA’s management plans, but I think the current unstated plan is a loosely managed herd immunity. They are opening up in stages, knowing their will be more infections, and just kind of hoping it will burn out.
    These college students going on cruises in March(endorsed by Dr Fauci), flying around the country, going on spring break to Florida, were somewhat aware and didn’t care about the risk of infection.

  37. It’s really sad to think that rickA and mikeN likely walk upright yet are as massively clueless about all of this, and so willing to lie about it.

    They seem to get that from trump and pence — pence who, in his spewing of lies about the president’s actions to the virus never told people to wear a mask but did tell them three times to pray.

    It’s no surprise, since he’s the shitstain who mismanaged aids and drug epidemics in his state when he was governor.

    1. >massively clueless about all of this, and so willing to lie about it.

      NPC Dean, If clueless, we can’t be lying about it.

  38. but I think the current unstated plan is a loosely managed herd immunity. They are opening up in stages, knowing their will be more infections, and just kind of hoping it will burn out.

    There is no plan. They screwed things up from the start, lied about the risk, then lied about what they were doing, and are continuing to lie about what they did to defeat the virus.

    – they didn’t shut down travel immediately although they claim they did
    – they didn’t supply the equipment states needed to protect people — they actively made it difficult for states to obtain PPE and ventilators
    – they didn’t follow the guidelines of their own advisors — just lied about it

    Now, with the asinine reopenings putting people at risk once again, their response is to deny it’s happening — witness pence’s lie-fest at the start of the press conference.

    People who pay attention see through it. People like you and rickA, who don’t have a clue about what is going on or have any care about harm, keep spreading the lies. You’re nothing but useful tools for horrible people.

    1. There are 50 plans – because the Governors are in charge. They decide to open up or shut down. Trump can control international travel (like shutting down travel from China), but he isn’t in charge of the states. The states have the police power – not the Feds.

      So right now we have 50 uncoordinated plans – and none of them are trying to manage herd immunity. They are trying to control the number of infections (which is totally different) and not very useful given that every governor has realized that a permanent shutdown until a vaccine is available isn’t an option. So with things open (as they have to be) and an R0 of over 2, we can expect the virus to continue to spread until the R0 drops below 1 (i.e. we reach herd immunity).

      So we will see how that works out. It is my belief that trying to manage the number of infections will not stop the spread of infection. The need to open up will keep the infections spreading and growing. Even California, a blue state with a blue governor, is resisting shutting back down. So all shutdowns will be temporary and designed to slow the rate of infections – and then things will open back up (as they have to).

      That is great if we can afford it and if there is a vaccine in fairly short order (say before the end of the year). But what if there is no vaccination? Then what.

      Well, the number of infections will rise until 67% of the population has been infected. And that will happen in an un-managed fashion (as it is now). I happen to think a managed herd immunity will cause less total death.

      I would ask for volunteers – first among hospital workers (10% of the cases in Minnesota are already health care workers so we have 3300 already) – then long term care workers – then police and so on for first responders. That would protect the non-Covid19 sick and the old (if the sick and old only came into contact with the recovered). Of course we would keep testing the recovered in case they do get sick again (a long shot I suspect – but better safe than sorry).

      Meanwhile, a state could ask for essential workers in a preferred age range to volunteer to get sick. Perhaps 18 to 50 ish. 2 weeks later the vast majority of those would be ready to work. Then expand it out to non-essential workers. In a month or six weeks the state could be mostly open and running again – while still keeping the sick and old (80% of the dead in Minnesota) isolated.

      That is just one layperson’s plan for managed herd immunity. With the cured health careworkers, we could guarantee the volunteers who require hospitalization (probably 1% or so) the best care, and expand it out, and expand it out and so on.

      Maybe it would work and maybe it wouldn’t. But we may end up getting the same number of sick, just not in a very useful order or controlled number, as you can if you manage it.

      I would imagine people smarter than I could come up with even better managed herd immunity plans – which could be implemented well before a vaccine is realistically available (if we actually get one or more).

    2. RickA, R0 doesn’t change. It is calculated based on a community without any changes in response to the virus.

      You are assuming a specific R0 to get to 67% herd immunity. What is your basis for that?

    3. “NPC Dean, If clueless, we can’t be lying about it.”

      NPC?

      No, again, you don’t understand. You are clueless about the topic and lying about your ignorance by claiming to understand the issue.

      It seems lack of understanding comes to you as naturally as breathing does.

    4. MikeN says “RickA, R0 doesn’t change. It is calculated based on a community without any changes in response to the virus.

      You are assuming a specific R0 to get to 67% herd immunity. What is your basis for that?”

      First, it is my understanding that R0 does change. As more people in the population get sick and recover, the pool of people who can still get sick shrinks. So at any point in time, the number of people who each infected person infects changes, both in space and time. So I have to disagree with your assertion.

      Second, herd immunity is calculated as 1 – 1/R0. So using an R0 of 3, that is 1 – 1/3, which is 2/3’s, which I rounded to 67%. If R0 is less than 3 (3 people infected by each sick person – on average), well than herd immunity is achieved at a lower level. If R0 is 2 than herd immunity is reach when 50% of the population has antibodies (gotten sick and recovered). Eventually, during the course of the pandemic, the number of new people infected on average by each sick person drops to 1 or lower, and that is when the illness starts to burn out.

      At least that is my understanding.

      I could be wrong, as I am not a doctor or medical person.

  39. “Endorsed by Fauci”.

    Weasel words if ever there were any. Notice that with right wing-nuts like MikeN and RickA the buck never stops with the orange neofascist. It is always someone else to blame. The current POTUS has never admitted he has done anything wrong when his whole administration is a train wreck.

    And once again, MikeN and RickA are just two examples of Americans supporting a Party that is shafting them. It doesn’t get much more stupid than this.

    1. Good point JeffH. Trump should fire Fauci, especially after he admitted that he lied about masks to make sure health workers could get them.

  40. “Loosely managed herd immunity”.

    Wtf is that?! Let me get this straight, then. The ‘unstated plan’ (by whom is not specified) is to hope that a totally novel but highly contagious virus infects enough people to create herd immunity and thus to ‘burn itself out’. And if it doesn’t? Half a million dead or more? What moron ‘planners’ have come up with this ridiculous plan? If such a plan exists, those who made it need their heads examined. Lemme guess: planners appointed by the orange narcissist?

    This kind of epidemiology is straight out of a comic book. As a scientist I really do not want to waste my time responding to such utter drivel.

    1. JeffH, this concept of a loosely managed herd immunity is I think what is behind the multi-phase end of lockdowns, instead of just letting their orders expire.
      No it is not Trump appointees. Democrat governors are also doing this, though a little bit slower than their Republican counterparts. Ralph Northam in Virginia has mostly opened up except for Northern Virginia, Illinois has restaurants open again, including buffets, etc. Generally they are being ordered to have a smaller capacity.

    2. I’m beginning to think mikeN and rickA push herd immunity not because they have an understanding of what it is (they clearly don’t) but because the phrase involves more syllables than the words they usually use and they think it makes them sound intelligent.

    3. “Loosely managed herd immunity” in the USA would entail 1.3-2.0 million dead at the lower end of the range, and ~3.0-4.0 million dead at the median part of the range.

      This is MikeN’s solution to COVID-19.

  41. Re dean “Currently listening to the Veep spout lie after lie about what trump did . . .”

    What got my blood pressure up listening to Pence and others is that they have the gall to give the Impeached President credit for his “leadership”! Leadership??? That’s a laugh. Almost the entireity of anything effective that has been done is due to the governors of the states showing such effects, typically in spite of the hindrance of the I.P., V.P, son-in-law, and parts of his administration. He hasn’t even been a role model for rational behavior, turning the wearing of masks into a test of party loyalty or masculinity or some childish crap like that. “What a maroon,” as Bugs Bunny used to say in the cartoons. (That phrase seemed apt for our cartoonish I. P.)

  42. ” I am only an electrical engineer,”

    You’re back to this line of bullshit again? Given your long demonstrated lack of knowledge of any math there is no more reason to believe this now than there was when you first brought it up.

  43. Blame state governors all you want MikeN but the buck rests with the federal government whose response to the pandemic from the very beginning has been utterly incompetent. Studies show anyway that Republican states locked down much later than Democrat states, but that really isn’t the point. I don’t want to get into US politics and how both parties are far to the right of the general population (the myth is that the Democrats are somehow left wing. Over here in Europe Biden for example would be seen as a right wing conservative and Trump a pseudo-fascist populist).

    Trump’s appointees in federal agencies tasked with protecting public health are almost all former corporate lobbyists, revealing where their true priorities lie. This herd immunity nonsense stems from their ideology. There will be no herd immunity in the US until there is a vaccine or unless 500,000, and probably more than a million people, die. This seems to be the preferred option of Trump’s followers (until of course they are infected). As it is, the death toll is horrendous and rising.

  44. RickA puts the ass in asinine with the post that includes this crazed idea:

    That is just one layperson’s plan for managed herd immunity. With the cured health careworkers, we could guarantee the volunteers who require hospitalization (probably 1% or so) the best care, and expand it out, and expand it out and so on.

    Given the appalling ling term consequences from being infected with this pathogen I can just see any such support being turned off at some time in what could have been a long future life if not infected.

    Perhaps RickA should volunteer his services.

    In addition to the psychological impact of the disease, it is also clear that lingering physiological problems are likely to be associated with Covid-19. “No one knows exactly what the disease will do in the long term to patients but we do know what impacts other forms of viral pneumonia – which Covid-19 can trigger – can have on patients,” said Professor Ian Hall of Nottingham University.

    With these conditions, many patients suffer from significant lung scarring and are affected by a condition known as advanced respiratory distress syndrome which can require months of recovery. “There is some initial evidence to suggest that for Covid-19 patients, it may take even longer,” he said.

    Hall added that there was likely to be impacts on other parts of the body. “For example, Covid-19 can cause serious inflammation that affects patients in the early stages of dementia and can leave them increasingly confused and stressed.”

    Britons will suffer health problems from Covid-19 for years, warn doctors

    Perhaps RickA should volunteer his services. After all Pence is insisting that everything is under control (see ‘Pinocchio Pence casts off reality and insists everything is under control’ ) as states see a rapid increase in Covid-19 cases, hitting a new record, and more deaths to the point where opening up is being scotched.

    Cognitive dissonance in this one strong it is.

  45. Does RickA really wear two hats?

    I am only an electrical engineer, not a doctor or medical person and even I know that basic fact.

    You have made out you are a lawyer.

    Whatever Covid-19 volunteers having lifetime medical support from government, good luck with that

    Millions of Americans who have survived Covid-19 or face future infections could lose their insurance or be barred from getting coverage should the Trump administration successfully repeal Obamacare.

    The Trump administration asked the supreme court late Thursday to overturn the Affordable Care Act – a move that, if successful, would bring a permanent end to the health insurance reform law popularly known as Obamacare.

    Covid-19 survivors could lose health insurance if Trump wins bid to repeal Obamacare.

    It seems there is no too low to go for Trump & Co.

    1. Lionel:

      Yes I am a patent attorney. I got my BS in electrical engineering from the University of Minnesota, went to law school in Minnesota and used my technical degree to become a patent lawyer. The patent bar only allows people with certain technical and scientific backgrounds to take it – so it was a natural fit for my background and interests. I also like to program for a hobby (mostly VBA – visual basic for applications) to integrate our lawfirm database (Access) with Word (for work), but also learned Fortran, turbo pascal, C and C++.

      So yes – I am both an engineer and a lawyer and I wear two hats.

      That is why I like to comment on both technical and legal issues – as I have an interest in both.

      dean doesn’t believe that I am an electrical engineer or a lawyer – but that is ok with me. Who cares what dean thinks? Not me – that’s for sure. His mind reading based on zero actual knowledge is actually very amusing.

      It is my engineering side which informs my opinion that renewable energy (especially wind and solar) actually uses more fossil fuel than nuclear energy and therefore isn’t as efficient at controlling carbon emissions. That is why I advocate generating 70 to 80% of our energy with nuclear and 20-30% with renewable.

      It is my legal side which tells me Michael Mann is going to lose his defamation case against Steyn (although that has dragged on for 9 years or so – crazy).

      It is my legal side which tells me that guns cannot be banned unless the 2nd amendment is amended, repealed or replaced, and even then many state constitutions would have to be amended also.

      So I do enjoy discussing climate change, COVID-19 and various legal issues at this blog.

      Greg has been kind enough not to ban me and so I plan to continue to engage.

      One big difference between me and dean, Jeffh and several other regulars, is that I try to keep it polite and on issue. I don’t engage in name calling – as it is juvenile and means the person hurling the insults has already lost the argument.

      Feel free to go back and review my posts compared to dean, Jeffh and the other regulars and see for yourself. Being polite always wins the argument. When an impasse is reached I simply say we will have to agree to disagree – which is rarely conceded is even an option. Very amusing. The more insulting the regulars become – the more I can tell I am winning on my core issues. So much fun and a good hobby.

      Anyway – I think herd immunity could be managed. I am not asking anybody to agree with me – I am not in a position to order it – I am just suggesting we should think and talk about it. If people want to disagree with me, that is their right. We can agree to disagree – that is always an option also.

      Saying you think I am a horrible person (ad hom) isn’t going to win any arguments. But if it makes you feel better – go for it. It just makes me more credible and you less credible, which I actually appreciate. I am here for the long haul and would like to build a track record of reliable predictions to be judged on. Someday I will have to go back and review the blog and see how I have done.

    2. Lionel:

      I did not suggest lifetime medical support for volunteers. Just free healthcare while they are sick from COVID-19. If they volunteer and are the unlucky 1% who have to be hospitalized, we should take care of them until they are out of the hospital. That is all.

      Would we get enough volunteers? Not sure. My experience says 20% of the people will probably volunteer. 20% of the people give 80% of the money at church and the same for volunteering for charity. So at least 20% will probably step up. Just a guess based on my own personal anecdotal experience. 10% of the total number of cases in Minnesota are already health care workers (about 3300 or so). So a lot of people already “volunteered”, just from their choice of profession and exposure. I bet we could at least double that.

      Hopefully everybody will realize that only using nursing home workers who are immune (have antibodies) would be safer for the residents. That is where 80% of the deaths are occurring in Minnesota – so just those workers would make a huge difference in fatality (if we could ensure only immune worked with long term care residents).

      Better yet – get hospital workers immune (especially for non-COVID-19 patients) and you cut down on another large source of future patients.

      Get essential workers immune and you will cut down on community spread.

      Get all non-essential workers immune and you cut down on community spread even more (this would be the hardest ask).

      But even dealing with nursing homes would make a huge difference. Worldwide, over 1/2 of the deaths are from nursing home/long term care residents.

      Just food for thought.

    3. “You have made out you are a lawyer.”

      He’s claimed to be an EE before, although it’s several years ago. Not long after that he demonstrated he didn’t have a grasp of even basic algebra when he mangled some calculation on one of his climate change denial binges and stopped claiming any expertise in science or tech areas.

      I’m guessing he bases his EE identity on the fact that he can change light bulbs when they need to be.

    4. That is why I like to comment on both technical and legal issues

      The bolded part there should be lie about.

      Nobody is disgusted with your comments because of your degrees rickA: the disgust comes from your constant stream of lies and refusal to be honest about the science in climate change — or anything else.

      Your rampant racism doesn’t help your cause either.

  46. RickA, there’s a difference between falling into a hole and jumping into one.

    Howver, if they gave special rotations for COVID-19 wings where you stay there for a month, you could get volunteers among the group that has not been able to get into a residency.

    Other than that, I can see younger people willing to come back to college early, but would they do so if they had 100% certainty of being infected?

    1. True enough.

      But I still think it is a discussion worth having.

      Do you agree that objectively it would be best if nursing home workers were immune?

    2. Greg:

      I have a comment stuck in moderation. Not sure what word I am using which is causing that.

  47. RicKA, the 10-1 ratio of infected but not diagnosed vs cases will come down with more testing. However, it could be the ratio was higher than 10-1 to begin with.

    If this disease is as contagious as JeffH contends, then the initial infection rate in March should have been much higher. It made its way from a nursing home in Seattle to North Carolina via a visitor before anyone noticed.

  48. Re: RickA “There are 50 plans – because the Governors are in charge. They decide to open up or shut down. Trump can control international travel (like shutting down travel from China), but he isn’t in charge of the states. The states have the police power – not the Feds.”

    1) There are 50 plans because, after proclaiming a national emergency, the Impeached President refused to set up a national response involving a coherent, science-based strategy, a national stockpiling and allotment of supplies needed for testing, hospital treatment, and protection of the population. The governors were asking for these things but instead of doing his job as “Chief Executive” he ceded his “power” to the governors because (a) he had no clue how to govern and (b) he thought being a “shipping clerk” was too hard on his ego. (This resulted in the states bidding against each other and the Federal government for needed supplies.) He never did fully use the Korean Conflict-era law to require U.S. industries to manufacture what was needed without ramping up their profits.

    2) Whatever the I. P. could have done about international travel he did nothing useful. Banning Chinese on direct flights from China while allowing untested Americans in was useless and made even less sense when he ignored flights that were not direct but were indirect from China and elsewhere to land. As a result 40,000 people entered the country via this loophole.) He also did nothing imely about flights from Europe and when he got around to it, he exempted some of the countries with the most cases (e.g. UK).

    3) It is true that it is the state governors who have the police power but that doesn’t absolve him from doing the things a real “Chief Executive” can and should do. He referred to himself as a “wartime President” but provided neither the leadership nor the relevant actions that real wartime Presidents have. Instead, he suggested HCQ and injections of bleach as possible cures for the Covid-19 virus.

    All of the things I’ve said are documented by news reports and other sources, so why do you keep ignoring them?

  49. Exactly as predicted, premature end to lockdown is triggering a second spike:

    As America’s reopening plans went into a dramatic reverse or stalled across the US in the face of a resurgent virus, Miami became the latest authority to act by announcing it was closing its beaches and planning a crackdown on coronavirus rules.

    The development happened as Florida reported yet another record rise in daily cases. The Florida Department of Health reported 9,585 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, shattering the previous daily high for positive Covid-19 infections which it notched up on Friday. Florida has now had 132,545 positive cases to date.

    […]

    The number of confirmed new coronavirus cases per day in the US hit an all-time high of 40,000 according to figures released by Johns Hopkins on Friday, eclipsing the mark first set during one of the deadliest stretches of the pandemic back in late April.

    Record seven-day case averages have now been reported by 13 states in total across a huge swathe of America, including Georgia, Idaho, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah and Washington.

    The news has thrown much of the US’s effort to reopen its economy – which president Donald Trump sees as crucial to his re-election efforts – into reverse, or stalled.

    Source: The Guardian

    Like I said, reality-denying rightwingers will be swatted – hard – by reality on this one.

    Time to stop defending the indefensible.

    1. We have right-wingers running for state office on a “Governor Whitmer went overboard on restrictions due to fake concerns of covid 19” platform. Basically they’re the same white assholes who complained about not being able to get a haircut — our versions of rickA and mikeN.

      Now, after some restrictions were lifted, we have (updated from the writing of the story at this link) 85 cases from one bar in Lansing.

      https://www.bridgemi.com/business-watch/michigan-bars-worry-east-lansing-bars-coronavirus-tally-tops-70-cases

      The denial of reality by these right-wing assholes is astounding.

  50. RickA thinks that a lot of people between 18 and 50 will volunteer to be infected by a virus that might kill them or leave long-lasting severe physiological damage. He is clearly living in some kind of dreamworld. If 1% volunteer for this potential suicide mission, that is a lot. Seriously, nobody in their right mind will volunteer to become infected.

    Tell you what. Get Trump to ask the rich whose pockets he is stuffing with money from tax cuts and deregulation to cough up some of their billions to pay people to voluntarily get infected by Covid-19. Thanks to neoliberal capitalism, obscene amounts of wealth are being concentrated at the top. Certainly these cretins can ‘donate’ some of the loot to a good cause like RickA’s illusory herd immunity.

    Wait! I have a better idea! Why don’t the billionaires volunteer themselves to become infected first? They can apparently buy anything, so certainly they can pay for their own immunity.

    Jokes aside, RickA’s ‘ideas’ for herd immunity are beyond parody. He and MikeN are as thick as bricks. And as LionelA said, RickA once claimed to be a lawyer. Now he is an electrical engineer. What next? A nuclear physicist?

    1. What next? A nuclear physicist?

      The obvious choice is brain surgeon, by appointment to the Donald, which didn’t last long for lack of material to work on, or with for that matter.

    2. Are you mad your mother volunteered you to be infected with chickenpox?

      Monumentally stupid mikeN, Monumentally stupid.

    3. Jeffh:

      Thank you Jeff. I didn’t know you thought so highly of my two degrees – putting them into the same thought as a nuclear physicist – wow.

      What kind of a scientist are you?

      I wondered – since you don’t seem to understand herd immunity.

    4. I wondered – since you don’t seem to understand herd immunity.

      I think the comprehension problem here is yours, not Jeff’s.

      Being polite always wins the argument.

      No, being correct wins the argument unless it is against someone like you who is impervious to correction no matter how frequently applied.

    5. BBD says “I think the comprehension problem here is yours, not Jeff’s.”

      Oh – do you also think it is impossible to achieve herd immunity without a vaccine?

    6. Oh – do you also think it is impossible to achieve herd immunity without a vaccine?

      This illustrates the comprehension problem.

      As we can see (those of us not impervious to reality), CV infections rapidly make too many people too ill for the health service to cope unless drastic measures are taken to reduce R.

      The argument is not, and never was, whether ‘herd immunity’ might eventually occur without a vaccine. The argument was and is that unchecked spread (exponential infection rate) will overwhelm the health service and cause huge numbers of deaths as a result (not all of which will be from those infected with CV; this is what ‘overwhelmed’ means when applied to the health service.

      The scientific advice has always been clear:

      1/ Lockdown to prevent the health service being overwhelmed and to allow the infection to substantially die out in the general population.

      2/ Cautious, phased lifting once R is well below 1 in tandem with a comprehensive test, track and isolate program to identify and contain flare-ups.

      The problems began when rightwing governments in various countries went into the usual rightwing denial behaviour when faced with unpleasant facts and:

      1/ For political reasons delayed lockdown until the virus was circulating widely within the population

      2/ For political reasons relaxed lockdown too soon, before the virus had been sufficiently suppressed within the population

      3/ Failed completely to get the necessary level of test, trace and isolate mechanisms into place before the premature easing of lockdown

      These failures have created a public health and economic catastrophe that could have been substantially avoided had politics and denialism not trumped scientific advice.

      If you would at least try to understand the facts it would improve the quality of the conversation.

      Your standard resort to tone-trolling when people get exasperated with your intransigence and failure to get to grips with the facts will not.

    7. BBD:

      Thank you for your polite reply.

      I only resort to defending myself when ad hom attacks are leveled against me. So you will have to put up with so called “tone trolling” as long as people keep attacking me instead of my arguments.

      Some posters here have in fact been arguing, in response to my suggestion that we look at managed herd immunity, that in fact herd immunity was ONLY possible with a vaccine. I believe that I have now won that point and it is now widely acknowledged that in fact herd immunity can be achieved with either a vaccine or naturally, by enough people getting COVID-19 and getting better.

      So managed herd immunity is one possible solution to our pandemic.

      All I am suggesting is that it be explored as a solution, in addition to lockdowns, mask wearing, hand washing and so forth.

      I am totally open to arguing about whether managed herd immunity is a good idea or a bad idea, now that its impossibility has been laid to rest.

      I think it is a good idea.

      Just getting all the nursing home/long term care workers immune (if possible) would cut down on deaths by over 50% (80% in Minnesota). That is a small ask for a large reward.

      How hard would be be to set aside a hotel, test all nursing home workers to identify all who already have immunity (antibodies), ask for volunteers, infect them, isolate them at the hotel for 14 days, take the ones who need hospitalization to the hospital, test at the end of the isolation period and put the immune back to work? This approach is what I call managed herd immunity.

      I submit it would not be impossible. Would enough people volunteer? We won’t know unless we ask. In Minnesota 3500 health care workers have already been infected with COVID-19 – I am not sure how many of them work at nursing homes or long term care facilities. That piece of information would be useful to know.

      Is it a good idea? Well I have my opinion and I would like to hear others.

      But thank you for arguing with me and not insulting me – that was quite refreshing!

    8. Thank you for your polite reply.

      The substance of which you almost completely ignored, so you can stuff your tone trolling.

      I only resort to defending myself when ad hom attacks are leveled against me. So you will have to put up with so called “tone trolling” as long as people keep attacking me instead of my arguments.

      Refusing listen, understand or admit error are irritating in an interlocutor, Rick. Your standard behaviour is a provocation in itself. People reacting to provocation of this type is not ad hominem. This has been pointed out many times before, so perhaps read the words, this time.

      Some posters here have in fact been arguing, in response to my suggestion that we look at managed herd immunity, that in fact herd immunity was ONLY possible with a vaccine. I believe that I have now won that point and it is now widely acknowledged that in fact herd immunity can be achieved with either a vaccine or naturally, by enough people getting COVID-19 and getting better.

      So managed herd immunity is one possible solution to our pandemic.

      No, it isn’t for reasons repeatedly explained in this thread and summarised by me in my previous comment, which you have largely blanked. Try reading the words again.

      All I am suggesting is that it be explored as a solution, in addition to lockdowns, mask wearing, hand washing and so forth.

      I am totally open to arguing about whether managed herd immunity is a good idea or a bad idea, now that its impossibility has been laid to rest.

      I think it is a good idea.

      Then you haven’t understood – or are choosing not to understand – the reasons why herd immunity is utterly unworkable as public policy. Read my previous comment (and others by others here) again.

      CV puts too many people in hospital too quickly. The only way to deal with it is (would have been) a fast lockdown at the outset which lasted until the disease was substantially suppressed. During which time, comprehensive test, trace and isolate policies needed to be put in place to deal with the inevitable ongoing flare-ups once lockdown was cautiously eased.

      That is public health policy in response to a novel viral pandemic. Not ‘herd immunity’, lying, minimising, failure to test etc. etc.

      It’s not hard to understand once you stop the partisan reality denial crap.

  51. 40,000 cases a day and climbing at this point.
    The time from case to death is how long?
    Assuming two weeks, do you predict there will be 2000 deaths on July 10, since the current death rate is 5.1%? Actually the death rate is higher since this adds hundreds of thousands of unresolved cases to the denominator.
    If the time to death is longer, then make it July 15.

  52. Gawd love a duck, RickA continues:

    I did not suggest lifetime medical support for volunteers. Just free healthcare while they are sick from COVID-19. If they volunteer and are the unlucky 1% who have to be hospitalized, we should take care of them until they are out of the hospital. That is all.

    What part of:

    In addition to the psychological impact of the disease, it is also clear that lingering physiological problems are likely to be associated with Covid-19. “No one knows exactly what the disease will do in the long term to patients but we do know what impacts other forms of viral pneumonia – which Covid-19 can trigger – can have on patients,” said Professor Ian Hall of Nottingham University.

    With these conditions, many patients suffer from significant lung scarring and are affected by a condition known as advanced respiratory distress syndrome which can require months of recovery. “There is some initial evidence to suggest that for Covid-19 patients, it may take even longer,” he said.

    Hall added that there was likely to be impacts on other parts of the body. “For example, Covid-19 can cause serious inflammation that affects patients in the early stages of dementia and can leave them increasingly confused and stressed.”

    do you not understand? All of it it would appear.

    Perhaps so many words blinded you to the message that Covi-19 can cause irreparable damage, of varied degrees, to lungs which would affect the person for the remainder of their lives. Such lung damage could mean that the patient will require extra oxygen in perpetuity. Also oxygen starvation can cause irreversible changes to cerebral function and reduced kidney efficiency this also requiring long term use of expensive medical support which in itself impacts the ability of the individual to live a normal life. That means all the things about life that you may take for granted such as earning a decent wage, forming relationships, having a satisfying sex life ad more.

    You are yet another supposedly educated person who cannot connect the dots between the salient points of an issue, heck you don’t even appear to recognise the dots.

    You are one those, ‘who has been educated far beyond their capacity to undertake analytical thought’, paraphrasing Peter Medaware , where ‘has’ was originally ‘have’.

  53. Interesting that right wing Rick claims to have an interest in legal issues as the regime he supports is eviscerating public constraints in pursuit of private profit. I wonder if he considers legality issues as Trump and the corporate cronies he hand-picked to head agencies tasked with protecting human health, nature and biodiversity are gutting regulations across the board. How legal is it to be sending biodiversity to hell and to be aiding and abetting the poisoning of the environment to increase profits? How legal is it to be pushing agendas that are threatening the future survival of humans as well?

    No doubt RickA will try to defend the indefensible. But through Wheeler, Bernhardt, Skipworth and the other corporate goons Trump has appointed to protect America’s biodiversity, nature is under attack like never before. Whatever legal issues are at play, the wanton destruction of nature is morally bankrupt.

    1. Not at all. If more depth is required, I wouldn’t mind hearing it. However, I think you are engaged in too much hysteria about the effects of this disease that millions have recovered from, and many millions more had either no effect or mild effects to begin with.

  54. Let me put it this way RickA. My comprehension is light years ahead of yours. I know exactly what herd immunity is – and why 99% of epidemiologists disregard it as a strategy in responding to Covid-19.

    As for your degrees, given the piffle you write up here, methinks your most advanced degree is in tiddly winks. Despite the fact that I have a PhD and I am a tenured Professor, I tend to place more emphasis on what people say than what their qualifications are. Still, your views on climate change, as demonstrated in previous threads, are abominable and are less about science and more about your warped political ideology. Just as with Covid-19. That you apparently can’t see this is telling.

    1. Jeffh:

      Nice dodge.

      Will you admit you were wrong to say:

      “There is no such thing as a ‘managed her immunity approach’ RickA so I wish you’d shut up about it. ”

      It is statements like this that make me doubt your actual knowledge of herd immunity.

      Do you really think it would be a bad idea to try to ensure our nursing home workers cannot infect their residents?

  55. Bernard, ‘loosely managed herd immunity’ is not my plan, it is what I think is the plan that is currently being implemented without admitting as much.

  56. Bernard, ‘loosely managed herd immunity’ is not my plan, it is what I think is the plan that is currently being implemented without admitting as much.

    So these are the steps to “loosely managed herd immunity? These are trump’s steps

    – Lying about the danger of the virus
    – Saying it would go away after a month or so
    – Saying it would go away when the weather turned warm
    – Lying about “immediately” shutting down travel from China and Europe
    – Withholding PPE and other equipment needed by states
    – Stealing supplies states had ordered and paid for and reselling them
    – Lying about the availability of testing (and turning down an offer of tests from WHO when the US could not produce or provide enough)
    – Telling people there is no need to wear masks while advisors say the opposite
    – Telling states to open up before things were close to under control

    That’s not a plan of anything other than willful dishonesty and incompetence.

    1. The House just impeached Trump and called him a traitor for not supplying Ukraine with weapons. How is that different from what Russia is accused of doing?

  57. Alex Azar today (6/28/2020)

    “Things are very different from two months ago… So it is a very different situation, but this is a very, very serious situation and the window is closing for us to take action and get this under control” Azar told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union.”

    Yup, sounds like their “plan” is really in place.

    He suggested that the US is better positioned to handled the pandemic than before, pointing to increased testing, contact tracing, hospital capacity, reserves of personal protective equipment, and advancement toward therapeutics and potential vaccines for the virus.

    Except for the facts that we don’t have enough testing, contact tracing, and probably not hospital capacity, the only things wrong are his statements about reserves of PPE and the actual dubious progress toward a vaccine.

    1. dean:

      What is your plan?

      At least I have proposed an alternative plan. All you do is complain about others.

    2. At least I have proposed an alternative plan.

      Keep going as usual and let a shit-ton of people get sick and hope for immunity when there’s no evidence there is any isn’t a plan dickhead. It’s more of the same ignorance and do nothing your idol in the White House has been pushing.

      It’s obvious stupidity was your strongest major.

  58. RickA, no I will not admit to being wrong because I am not wrong. No country on Earth is adopting a managed herd immunity approach. Sweden didn’t really know what it was doing so it did a bit of everything. The US response to Covid-19 has been a disaster since the very beginning. I would call it herd stupidity. Chaos personified. Opening up when R0 is >1.0 after a lockdown is utterly senseless. Brazil has also followed a herd insanity approach to ensure that hundreds of thousands of people die.

    As for immunity, again it is a shot in the dark. Epidemiologists are largely united in saying that we do not know how long immunity to Covid-19 lasts (if at all) after infection and how severe the infection needs to be to confer immunity. Until we have concrete answers to these questions a herd immunity approach is irresponsible and dangerous. Moreover, it seems like a lot of people who recover from Covid-19 have long-lasting damage to their lungs and other organs that makes them highly vulnerable to other pathogens.

    So of course you have not got a clue what you are talking about. Stick to wiring the toaster or judging bingo games or whatever it is you do but take my advice and avoid anything remotely scientific.

    1. Huh. You also said “Thus the only way to achieve herd immunity, as me, BBD and countless others have said is with a vaccine. ”

      Do you stand by that also?

      Something being stupid and something being impossible are two different things – don’t you agree?

    2. Jeffh:

      Come on – admit you were wrong! It is good for you.

      You got mad and said some things you didn’t mean and that were flat out wrong.

      Even scientists of whatever discipline you are (probably not medical based on your understanding of herd immunity) can be wrong from time to time. Why even electrical engineering patent attorneys have been known to be wrong from time to time. It happens to us all.

      Of course herd immunity can be developed naturally.

      After all, before vaccines were invented, that is how every other corona-virus was stopped – naturally – by enough people getting sick and having antibodies that the infection died out.

    3. Jeffh

      Moreover, it seems like a lot of people who recover from Covid-19 have long-lasting damage to their lungs and other organs that makes them highly vulnerable to other pathogens.

      Now I pointed that out to him twice, the second time after he had come back with:

      I did not suggest lifetime medical support for volunteers. Just free healthcare while they are sick from COVID-19. If they volunteer and are the unlucky 1% who have to be hospitalized, we should take care of them until they are out of the hospital. That is all.

      he has failed to respond to that. Of course he has he hopes we will forget his crass lack of understanding of how pathogens kill. With the 1917-18 and on influenza it was secondary pathogens that attacked whilst the immune systems were compromised. So just as with Covid it was the secondary infections which actually killed. Now I have pointed out to RickA texts which explain all this but like the true denier that he is he does not bother to read up before opining. Once again he thinks his baseless opinions are better than arguments based upon facts. WE have far to much of such crap thinking going on. RickA surely deserves the description of Peter Medaware repeated above.

      This is like discussing with a child, a Trump-child.

  59. rickA, it’s clear you don’t understand the science here, but by all means continue to claim that

    – doing nothing, as you propose, is a plan
    – Jeffh doesn’t understand what he’s talking about (your lack of understanding of his point doesn’t negate his point)

    Your tech school EE degree isn’t serving you well here.

    As for Trump’s “plan”: again, it was to work against anyone trying to understand the issue.

    https://www.politico.com/amp/news/2020/06/23/fauci-nih-white-house-bat-study-336452?__twitter_impression=true&utm_source=fark&utm_medium=website&utm_content=link&ICID=ref_fark

    1. dean:

      My plan is far from “doing nothing”. Doing nothing is just letting people get sick willy nilly as has been happening.

      My plan involves doing something.

      Namely, asking for volunteers among the nursing home/long term care workers to get sick and better so only the immune are working with the nursing home/long term care residents. That is far from nothing.

      I would next expand my plan to the non-covid19 sick at hospitals – to avoid getting people with heart attacks and other illnesses requiring the hospital sick from this health care workers.

      Then expand again to clinics.

      Then to police, ambulance and EMT workers and other first responders.

      Then to essential workers and finally to non-essential workers (like you).

      I propose nothing less than managing who gets sick, when and in what order, so as to minimize the number of deaths we incur as a result of COVID-19.

      That is not nothing – that is really something!

      p.s. (that felt a bit like a pinky and the brain rant – what fun – queue the maniacal laughter).

    2. rickA, your plan is the same as doing nothing. There is no way to control who gets infected, so “managing” the movement from group to group as you outline is impossible.

      I will, however, grant that you are so fundamentally stupid that you didn’t realize that.

  60. Re: MikeN “The House just impeached Trump and called him a traitor for not supplying Ukraine with weapons.”
    =
    1) He was NOT impeached for not supplying Ukraine with weapons, he was impeached for holding up the delivery of weapons (that had been promised) for the purpose of improving his chances of re-election by getting the President of Ukraine to announce that there would be an investigation of Joe and Hunter Biden’s activities in Ukraine.

    2) He was not “called a traitor” in the impeachment document. He was not charged with Treason, he was charged with violating the U. S. Constitution by putting his interests before those of the nation. (We were backing Ukraine against a rogue Russia which threatened the stability of European allies by taking territory from another nation by force of arms.)

    Is there anything that you don’t understand about either of my points?

    Personally, I do think Trump IS a traitor to the U. S. by taking every opportunity to satisfy his own desires and those of Vladimir Putin at the expense of our nation (in environmental damage, damage to the separation of powers and independence of the judiciary, money, international prestige, and the trust of our allies).

    1. Tyvor, if we are supporting Ukraine in executing hostile acts against Russian soldiers who are in Ukraine, is that different from Russia supporting Taliban in executing hostile acts against US soldiers in Afghanistan?
      I think one would invite the other.

      As for treason, read the Judiciary Committee’s report:
      https://docs.house.gov/billsthisweek/20191216/CRPT-116hrpt346.pdf
      ” At the very heart of “Treason” is deliberate betrayal of the nation and
      its security. Such betrayal would not only be unforgivable, but would also confirm that the President
      remains a threat if allowed to remain in office. A President who has knowingly betrayed national
      security is a President who will do so again. He endangers our lives and those of our allies. “

  61. ” Why even electrical engineering patent attorneys have been known to be wrong from time to time. ”

    At at least one — by the name rickA — is a congenital liar with zero understanding of science.

    1. I’m not going to give any credit to your ability to evaluate this after you failed to recognize Mann’s upside-down usage after being shown the code.

    2. More ad hom, mixed with opinion.

      I submit that based on the record here it is clear I understand the science far better than dean and Jeffh. Not so sure about BBD, as he comes off as much more knowledgeable (always has). I have been engaging with BBD on various blogs for more than 10 years now (I think) and he (or she) has earned my respect. Dean and Jeffh – not so much.

    3. I’m not going to give any credit to your ability to evaluate this after you failed to recognize Mann’s upside-down usage after being shown the code.

      There is nothing wrong with Mann’s analysis mikeN. Nor on any of the work that replicated his results –your lack of understanding and rickA’s outright lies notwithstanding.

      If you don’t understand the statistics — which you clearly don’t — that’s one thing. Claiming it’s wrong because you don’t understand, as you two do, is blatant dishonesty.

    4. dean says “If you don’t understand the statistics — which you clearly don’t — that’s one thing. Claiming it’s wrong because you don’t understand, as you two do, is blatant dishonesty.”

      You logic is muddled. According to you we are either wrong (because we don’t understand) or we are lying (because we are understand but are trying to intentionally deceive). MikeN and I cannot be both wrong and dishonest – as those to are incompatible.

      In fact, neither of those assertions is correct. The correct option is that it is you who is wrong (about Mann, about COVID-19 and about climate change).

  62. With 40,000 cases daily, and a death rate of about 5% of the case rate(higher more than 10% of cases are recent), then we should expect to see the daily deaths go past 2000 in a few weeks. Who expects this will happen, and will there be a new peak, around 3,000?

    1. < According to you we are either wrong (because we don’t understand) or we are lying (because we are understand but are trying to intentionally deceive)

      The wrong/lying option isn’t XOR you moron. You’ve lied about the climate science, lied about Mann’s work (mikeN does this too). Your lack of understanding about issues related to covid 19 make you wrong.

      Your claim that you’re neither is simply ignorant.

  63. RickA, thankfully your opinion is completely worthless and herd immunity through promoting mass infection of the public with coronavirus is off the table, except in Brazil where the President is certifiably crazy and cares only for himself. Everywhere else most heads of state realize that allowing the virus to spread through the population will overwhelm the health systems and lead to horrendously high death rates. Trump is so stupid that he doesn’t have a clue what to do. Well, except to inject bleach.

    The only option for so-called herd immunity is through a vaccine while retaining measures to limit the spread of the virus, preventing it from exceeding a certain threshold that is beyond the ability of health care systems to cope.

    1. So how do you explain why the Spanish flu fizzled out in 1918-1919? Was there a vaccine?

      Nope – herd immunity was reached. That is how it worked before vaccines (then), and it is how it works if there is no vaccine before herd immunity is reached (now).

    2. Yep – that is part of my plan also.

      Manage who gets sick and keep the number to just below the level the health care systems can handle. Use lockdowns and the other measures to manage the level, but also manage who gets sick, in what order and how many.

      Jeffh is part of the way there.

    3. So how do you explain why the Spanish flu fizzled out in 1918-1919? Was there a vaccine?

      Nope – herd immunity was reached.

      After between 50 – 100 million deaths.

      This is why your incessant wittering about herd immunity will not make it into a workable public health policy. Ever.

    4. BBD says “After between 50 – 100 million deaths.”

      I have read estimates of 50 million or higher, but also seen estimates of as low as 17 million. But no matter how many people died, I cite it to show that herd immunity can happen naturally. I am glad we all agree on that now.

      With a managed herd immunity approach I am sure we could do much better than the Spanish flu death total (whatever it is).

      .5% of 2/3’s of 8 billion is 26,800,000 – which is what I would expect given a 1 to 10 ratio of the current death rate (confirmed cases – about 5% CFR) to in the wild cases (10 times more IFR of .5%).

      Just eliminating the nursing home deaths would cut this in 1/2 and save 14 million lives (as nursing home deaths are more than 1/2 of the total deaths worldwide).

      I feel that a managed herd immunity could lower the total deaths to 8 million or even lower – which is a lot better than 26 million.

      If we get a vaccine before we reach herd immunity level – great! But we better be fast, because we will probably be at almost 50% of herd immunity by the end of the year.

      But if no vaccine is available before we get to herd immunity naturally (which is happening pretty fast), the choice is between managed herd immunity and unmanaged herd immunity. I know which choice I prefer – the one which lowers the death total. Which choice do you guys prefer?

    5. I cite it to show that herd immunity can happen naturally. I am glad we all agree on that now.

      We always did. You insist on ‘misunderstanding’ this for imaginary rhetorical gain.

      The point, stated endlessly, which I cannot be bothered to re-type yet again, is pasted below:

      […] you haven’t understood – or are choosing not to understand – the reasons why herd immunity is utterly unworkable as public policy. Read my previous comment (and others by others here) again.

      CV puts too many people in hospital too quickly. The only way to deal with it is (would have been) a fast lockdown at the outset which lasted until the disease was substantially suppressed. During which time, comprehensive test, trace and isolate policies needed to be put in place to deal with the inevitable ongoing flare-ups once lockdown was cautiously eased.

      That is public health policy in response to a novel viral pandemic. Not ‘herd immunity’, lying, minimising, failure to test etc. etc.

      It’s not hard to understand once you stop the partisan reality denial crap.

      ***

      So read the words, get a clue and cut the reality denial crap. Arizona, Texas, Florida – fast running out of hospital capacity. Median age of infection now down in the 30s. Young people are increasingly ending up seriously ill in hospital. Once services are overwhelmed, the mortality will expand to non-CV infected critically ill and A&E admissions.

      Instead of endlessly pushing your stupid political peanut, stop. Shut up.

      Think.

  64. RickA, coming from you, that is a compliment. Your views on anything to do with science are contaminated by your repugnant right wing political ideology. It wasn’t so long ago that you were advocating on here mass infection as a strategy for gaining herd immunity against Covid-19. This strategy conflicts with the views of just about every reputable epidemiologist, and would invariably lead to a collapse of health care systems and the avoidable death of huge numbers of people.

    Your puerile views on climate change have been deconstructed here and on other blogs (e.g. And Then There’s Physics) so no need to elaborate upon that further. No matter what the current POTUS and his corporate administration does, you defend them. Trump’s record on the environment and conservation is abominable, and he is arguably the most anti-environmental President in US history. His administration has relaxed or eliminated scores of regulations protecting fragile ecosystems and habitats as well as rare or declining populations and species. He runs roughshod over laws that protect marine and terrestrial ecosystems. Pesticide laws, water and air protection regulations, threatened habitats and biodiversity are all under a massive assault by an administration hell-bent on gutting the Treasury for the benefit of a narrow ruling corporate elite.

    And you raise no objections to any of it. Instead, you are oblivious to the physical world and appear to be one of those cheerleading its destruction via your support for a President and Party that have made corporate profit maximization a priority. So don’t you write on here as if you hold the intellectual and moral high ground. You don’t.

    1. Manage who gets sick and keep the number to just below the level the health care systems can handle.

      Holy fucking shit you are stupid.

  65. RickA, one last thing: as someone who consistently downplays the human role in climate change, your views are not really worthy of respect. You have absolutely zero qualifications in climate or environmental science, yet that doesn’t prevent you trying to imply that your views have merit. They don’t. As I keep repeating on here, your scientific views are heavily contaminated by your right wing political ideology. You cannot bring it on yourself to admit that the anti-environmental policies of the current administration are deplorable. That is because you agree with many of them. You don’t believe that Golden-Cheeked Warblers, Black-Capped Vireos, Red-Cockaded Woodpeckers, Black-Footed Ferrets, Swift Foxes, Wolverines, West Virginia White Butterflies or indeed any of the hundreds of species or their habitats under threat by the policies of the liar-in-chief and his administration are necessarily worthy of conservation. Biodiversity is declining across the biosphere at an alarming rate largely because of neoliberal policies and right wing governments that are championing them. The prognosis is dire, unless urgent changes in policies are undertaken in which life itself is not simply viewed as a commodity to be bought and sold for profit.

    I honestly do not know why you write onto a progressive blog like this one espousing right wing rhetoric. You are constantly proven to be wrong on a diverse range of issues and yet you merely shrug your shoulders and move onto the next meme.

    1. I come here to inject a little of the other side of the argument into this progressive bubble. I am doing you a service – even though it seems to cause you cognitive dissonance. You will thank me later once you realize how wrong you are.

    2. “I come here to inject a little of the other side of the argument ”

      You come here to lie.
      You come here to misrepresent science.
      You come here to support racism and authoritarianism.

      You’ve never come here for an honest exchange of ideas. That’s not in your nature.

    3. I come here to inject a little of the other side of the argument into this progressive bubble. I am doing you a service – even though it seems to cause you cognitive dissonance. You will thank me later once you realize how wrong you are.

      This is insane.

      More ad hom. Boring!

      Despite repeated explanation, you still don’t understand what is and what is not ad hominem.

  66. RickA.

    I come here to inject a little of the other side of the argument …You will thank me later once you realize how wrong you are.

    ‘Not even wrong’, to paraphrase another because he was another Austrian who shared a name with one of my favourite composers.

    1. Yeah – you might be right. I doubt Jeffh will thank me when he figures out how wrong he is.

  67. Re: MikeN “Tyvor, if we are supporting Ukraine in executing hostile acts against Russian soldiers who are in Ukraine, is that different from Russia supporting Taliban in executing hostile acts against US soldiers in Afghanistan?”
    =

    Yes, it is different.

    1) Ukraine, a fledgling democratic state is trying to protect itself from Russian, a dictatorship, which has already annexed a part of the country by force. The Taliban is not a state but is in conflict with the state of Afghanistan with the apparent objective of eliminating any democratic freedoms. particularly for women, and imposing Islamic tyranny.
    2) Russia’s forceful annexation and other hostile actions there and in a number of other countries are considered a threat to peace in Europe and as a founding member of NATO with treaty obligations that concerns the U. S. too. The Taliban is a non- or extra-national group whose aims are in no way consistent with the interests or ideals of the U. S.
    3) Reasons for Russia’s ties with the Taliban include Putin’s desire to decrease the power, prestige, and activity of the U. S. A. whenever and wherever he can. It was U. S. help that allowed the Afghans to drive Russia out of that country. This ignominious defeat still rankles. This and other reasons are given in:

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-53220163

    1. So if the US is supporting Ukraine in bringing harm against Russian soldiers, don’t you think that would lead to Russia supporting Taliban and others against US soldiers?(and vice versa)

  68. Re: MikeN ”

    1) Tyvor, if we are supporting Ukraine in executing hostile acts against Russian soldiers who are in Ukraine, is that different from Russia supporting Taliban in executing hostile acts against US soldiers in Afghanistan?
    I think one would invite the other.
    =

    Yes it is different. Russia is a dictator-led state that has taken territory by force of arms and is viewed with alarm by the rest of Europe, including our NATO allies there and elsewhere. The Taliban is an extremist extra-national group being used by Russia for a number of reasons, none of which involve increasing democracy or stability in Afghanistan. See more:

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-53220163
    = = =

    2) “As for treason, read the Judiciary Committee’s report: . . .”
    =

    The description of treason seems to fit the Impeached President very well. Nevertheless, he was not charged with treason. The relevant charge was “abuse of power.” It even says so early in the report.

    Avoidance of the T-word in the indictment was most likely an attempt to give Senate Republicans a smaller mountain to climb. As it happens the Senate invertebrates were not interested in a real trial with evidence. Instead, with one exception, they followed their leader who took his cues from the White House line — and said so in public, as if violation of his oath of office or his soon-to-be-taken jury oath were of no importance.
    = = =

    Thanks for the link to the pdf.

  69. Spanish flu only ‘fizzled out’ after killing 50 million people around the world.

    Letting a dangerous virus run rampant through a population is insanity. You are a complete klutz, RickA.

    1. “Letting”?

      Please wave your magic wand and stop it from spreading.

      Spread now or lockdown and spread later – it will spread, until a vaccine is developed and deployed worldwide. Do you think that will happen by next spring? Because by then we will almost be at full herd immunity, and have suffered the death total of unmanaged herd immunity.

      Or we can act now and manage herd immunity and lower the total death total.

      I am very pessimistic that we can develop a vaccine, test it and get it fully deployed before we reach herd immunity naturally, given the growth in daily cases, both in the USA and worldwide. Faucci says we might top out at 100,000 per day – which is really 1,000,000 per day at a 10 to 1 ratio. Oops – not even a fully year to infect all 330,000,000 people in the USA.

  70. And again, RickA, it is you who is wrong. Your herd immunity argument presupposes that we know exactly how this infection will play out. We know very little about the virus or the human physiological responses to it. At the same time, Dr. Fauci once again said yesterday that herd immunity will only work once a vaccine is available, but he expressed deep concern that many people will refuse it because of deep-rooted irrational fears that it is part of a conspiracy led by Bill Gates and George Soros to inject some form of microchip to track their movements. Yes, many people are this patently stupid.

    As for ‘thanking you’ for your brazen stupidity, I will give that a pass. Every link you have posted here about herd immunity has argued that it is not a viable option in responding to Covid-19. It seems like this is the part of the text that your brain cannot accurately process. You have never ‘thanked’ anyone here who have repeatedly proven how wrong you are about climate change, with your “I think around 50% of it is down to human forcing and 50% is down to natural variability”. WRONG. It is pretty well completely down to us. The data are in.

  71. Re MikeN “So if the US is supporting Ukraine in bringing harm against Russian soldiers, don’t you think that would lead to Russia supporting Taliban and others against US soldiers?(and vice versa)”
    =
    Having done something against the laws of modern civilized society and been balked by the U. S. response (initiated during President Obama’s tenure), it is not out of the way to suppose that it might have lead the Russians (i. e. Putin) to do something even more reprehensible in Afghanistan to strike back at the U. S. for that and other past activities (I hope you read the BBC article).

    So what? Are you trying to equate the two? Isn’t that like saying that if someone breaks into your neighbor’s house to steal something but you scare them off, the would-be burglar is perfectly justified in shooting your son the next day to punish you for having interrupted the burglary?

    The Russian action is not the point in and of itself. The point is: Why did Trump not call this action out? Why did he not impose some sort of sanctions? He is the Commander-in-Chief of U. S. Armed Forces. He can’t duck that responsibility. He’s been vocal enough about what he perceives as our allies’ failings; why is he so sensitive about saying or doing something harsh to Putin? (I think I know.) I hope you are not naive enough to believe the excuse from a documented serial liar that he was never briefed about it and that those who say he was are the liars.

    1. Not briefed about it? It’s not even clear that it happened.
      Just some supposition that was being investigated, and now the investigation is more difficult because of the leak to the press.

  72. Rick, go back to Breitbart or the Daily Caller or Fox News, or wherever it is where you seek affirmation of your warped views. I have the urge to burst into laughter every time you write piffle about ‘managing’ herd immunity while protecting the vulnerable and not overwhelming health services. Managing a highly contagious virus that we know very little about is like telling the Australians to manage the climate-change mediated fires every summer. It can’t be done. Either the virus us allowed to go through populations killing huge numbers of people, or we take measures via lockdowns and social distancing to drive the infection down and remain vigilant until a vaccine is available or to monitor the R0 value. Herd immunity via mass infection is only the policy of madmen like Bolsonaro.

    1. JeffH, if the virus is highly contagious, then it should have spread very wide prior to lockdowns. There was at least two months where it was spreading, while Fauci was saying we are monitoring it but for now no need to change your day by day, and others calling you racist for not going to Chinatown.

      It is clearly somewhat contagious, as it managed to go from a nursing home in Seattle to North Carolina via its first case who visited the nursing home, but if it is highly contagious, then I would expect a much higher number has been exposed already, and will continue to be exposed.

    2. JeffH, if the virus is highly contagious, then it should have spread very wide prior to lockdowns.

      It did. And lots of people died, although only a fraction of those who are going to.

      It is clearly somewhat contagious, as it managed to go from a nursing home in Seattle to North Carolina via its first case who visited the nursing home, but if it is highly contagious, then I would expect a much higher number has been exposed already, and will continue to be exposed.

      Been through this already. Please read my comments. As with the ever-tedious RickA, now I’m forced to cut and paste, again:

      US population = 328m

      1% of US population = 3.28m

      CV cases reported in US to date = 2.45m

      Assume under-reporting means this is only 10% of actual US cases so the real total = 25m infections

      Percent of US population infected under this assumption = 25 000 000 / 3 280 000 = 7.6

      So about *7.6%* of US population infected so far

      At least **92%** still to go.

      *****

      This is a US public health disaster in the making yet on you witter, defending the Donald. But reality doesn’t care. Texas, Arizona, Florida and all the rest, hotting up before your very eyes, whether they are open or shut tight in denial.

      Reality’s coming for you Mike. And it will bite hard.

      And in your heart of hearts, you know it.

    3. BBD, should I chalk you up as deaths will hit 1000 within a week and 2000 within two weeks, based on 5% death rate among infected?

    4. BBD, should I chalk you up as deaths will hit 1000 within a week and 2000 within two weeks, based on 5% death rate among infected?

      What? I did not say this.

      My focus is on hospitalisation rates and the collapse of heath services as a result.

      I wish you would read my comments properly. And stop with the squirrels.

  73. Re: MikeN “Not briefed about it? It’s not even clear that it happened.
    Just some supposition that was being investigated, . . .”
    =

    The news that intelligence had been gathered which pointed to bounties being paid by the GRU was sent out (over what is called “the wire”) to the wider intelligence community and was shared with our allies but no one bothered the Impeached President with it? Really? Why would that have been?

    (1) Unimportant? No, even the possibility is important for the C-in-C to know.
    (2) Something that the the I. P. didn’t want to hear? Quite possible, he is notoriously averse to bad news and apt to “shoot the messenger” so to speak.
    (3) It has also been suggested that his staff were afraid that the he would immediately run to Papa Putin with it instead of actually, you know, punishing Russia or just stop doing favors for them.

    However, it is irrelevant because the information WAS included in his daily intelligence briefing paper, the thing that every other modern President has started his day reading in order to be able to do his job at that cool “resolute” desk in the Oval Office and elsewhere.
    = =

    Re: “. . . and now the investigation is more difficult because of the leak to the press.”
    =

    Apparently not so. More information has already been reported, including about the money transfer from Russia (with love?) to the Taliban and the amount of the bounty ($100,000) per U. S. or allied soldier.

    1. Update:

      1) Well, the Impeached President has now been briefed on what he called a possible “hoax” and pretended he had never been briefed on before.* Did he then act forcefully and decisively to address that situation? Nope. (I suppose saving monuments to traitors defending slavery is more important.)

      2) It has also been reported today that the I. P. was enraged when he was told before the Tulsa rally that six of his advance minions had tested positive for Coronavirus.** Did he then act forcefully and decisively to address that situation? Yes, after a fashion. He discouraged any of his minions getting tested.
      =

      * I can understand why. People who have worked for/with him say that he not only refuses to read briefs but is very averse to having anyone brief him verbally. Add his short attention span, bizarre and unfounded belief that he knows more about complex subjects after an hour than the experts do. It is therefore quite possible that he was told about the Russian bounty offers but it never really penetrated his consciousness (or overwhelmed his adoration of Putin).

      ** Testing in the Trumpoid brain is either, take your pick: (a) the cause of virus infection, not the detection of a virus infection, or (b) heavy rain on the I. P. re-election parade and therefore needs to be decreased. If that means some minions get sick and die, that’s the price he’s willing to pay.

    2. The leak appears to have been timed to sabotage plans to withdraw from Afghanistan. House Armed Services just voted with Liz Cheney joining in. The only no votes from Democrats were Gabbard, Khanna, and one more. John McCain’s 100 years is starting to seem likely.

  74. MikeN, the virus did spread widely prior to the lockdowns. Indeed, the US and UK acted too late to impose measures to slow it. I have no doubt that the number of people who have been infected by Covid-19 is probably 10 times higher than official estimates or even more but this is pure speculation. And the death toll is certainly higher too if excess deaths between March and June are compared with the average death rate over that period of time in past years.

    But again, none of this has anything to do with ‘managing’ herd immunity. Without a vaccine and much more extensive testing the infection rate of a highly contagious pathogen cannot be simply ‘managed’. This is like trying to manage a punch-up in a bar. I am working on an experiment with spiders right now and my colony of spiders has become infested with a parasitic mite. At high enough numbers they kill the spiders whereas at lower densities they do not. I don’t know how they got in to my spider culture but they are impossible to manage. RickA is speaking nonsense (as usual) when he discusses anything to do with science, including herd immunity.

    A point I also wish to reiterate once again (never addressed by the lawyer/electrician/nuclear physicist/climate scientist etc. etc.) is that Covid-19 is a novel pathogen and as such we know very little if anything about the duration, strength, or effectiveness of immunity to it after infection. Certainly scientists are making headway in that direction, but these are early days. Those who forcefully argue for a herd immunity approach are primarily right wing libertarians who want to go back to ‘normal’ immediately. Many of them downplay the seriousness of the virus, or claim wrongfully that it is no worse than the flu. These points have been proven wrong but Covid-19 deniers are much like climate science deniers.

    Lastly, stop blaming Fauci for the incompetence of Trump and his abominable administration. The buck stops with the POTUS.

  75. RickA as ever:

    Spread now or lockdown and spread later – it will spread, until a vaccine is developed and deployed worldwide.

    The Editor in Chef of The Lancet has a book published, drawing on articles he penned for the press, The COVID-19 Catastrophe: What’s Gone Wrong and How to Stop It Happening Again, you should study it. where he explains that should a vaccine be developed it is unlikely to be a magic bullet, also it would not be fully taken up. That latter because of the anti-vax, anti-science campaigns where the US stands out as being a prime example. Patchy public education and deliberate policies to ensure that the population as a whole is scientifically illiterate, Betsy DeVos being one who has done so much damage there.

    You should also study the texts I have cited elsewhere here along with one or two on the 1918 influenza pandemic. Had you picked up on those suggestions you would not have felt the need to ask questions here.

  76. BBD, your 7.6% may be valid, but it cuts against the highly infectious aspect.
    If it is highly infectious, then there should have been millions of cases, perhaps tens of millions, prior to March, that went unreported as the virus spread unchecked in February and late January(and maybe sooner). This is possible, but I doubt it.

    1. MikeN,

      The coronavirus isn’t infecting people very fast, you say? Well, it certainly didn’t take long for new cases per day in the U. S. to shoot up to >50,000 ppd after the ill-conceived “opening up” of the country/economy occurred — and that was with the U. S.’s (still) inadequate testing capability. I believe that, currently, in the “hottest” states, you can only get a test if you have symptoms, and even then it is problematic. We can only guess at how many people are infected and can’t get tested or don’t know they should be tested or refuse to get.

    2. BBD, your 7.6% may be valid, but it cuts against the highly infectious aspect.
      If it is highly infectious, then there should have been millions of cases, perhaps tens of millions,

      Rubbish. Exponential curves start off fairly flat.

    3. Exponential curves start off fairly flat.

      Exactly. The doubling time for coronavirus cases was only 2-4 days for many countries, prior to stringent control measures being implemented.

      https://jglobalbiosecurity.com/articles/10.31646/gbio.61/

      In addition the virus’s R₀ value is over 2.0, which is nothing to be sneezed at…

      https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-00758-2

      As always MikeN is blithely speaking nonsense and does not have the decency to admit that yet again he’s doing so.

  77. Thanks to the complete incompetence of nearly all Republicans in high office, we not not only have skyrocketing Covid-19 infection in 40 states but we also have the same long lines for tests we’ve seen before and testing sites closing early because they’ve run out of what they need to do the testing, But wait, there’s more: it still may take a week or more to get your test results if you can get tested, we are running short of personal protective gear (N-95 masks and all) again and the U. S. industry that a real President would have kicked into gear, has warned Congress that the amount needed is “unsustainable.” In other words, we are in exactly the same dire straits as we were in March (when we’d already lost a month thanks to “It’s a hoax,” ‘It’s just the flu,” It’s under control,” lt’ll all go away, like magic,” from our “wartime President), and we still have idiots in high places in some state governments that punish mayors and other officials from making mask-wearing madatory, and assert that they aren’t listening to experts.

    THIS is what the Impeached President’s Making America Great Again looks like. We are now the laughing stock of the world and there’s STILL about 1/3 of the public who think he’s doing a good job. What would a poor job look like? Forced infection of the population by the Federal government?

    1. Tyvor Winn

      …we are running short of personal protective gear (N-95 masks and all) again.,..

      Not only that, global there is a looming shortage of oxygen equipment, remember those other than Coronavirus patients rely upon this to stay alive. The body count, largely thanks to Trump and his fanning of the ‘viral flames’ is mounting rapidly and I suspect you haven’t seen anything yet in the US.

      Global report: WHO warns of global shortage of oxygen equipment

      Now those of us this side of the pond have no room to crow over the US as the Johnson gang (father Sydney Johnson flew to Greece, via Bulgaria to avoid quarantine, so as to ensure his villa lets were Covid ready for the holiday season thus outdoing Cummins with irresponsibility) of opportunistic amateurs appear set on creating a similar resurgence of the infection rate in the UK.

    2. Tyvor, I am talking about what was happening in January and February. If the disease is as highly contagious as JeffH implies, then we should have had many more cases in those months. 50,000 to 100,000 cases daily that we have now should have been the case then with no social distancing or masks, probably even more infections.
      Perhaps we did, and the virus just isn’t that deadly. I read that California had a bad flu season. However, the death toll from something like that would have been noticed I think.

  78. No MikeN, it doesn’t cut against the highly infectious aspect at all, unless we know exactly when it first arrived in Europe, the United States and elsewhere. Furthermore, it appears that the virus is both unique and strange in that there are differences in the ability of carriers to spread it. Some people appear to be predisposed to act as super-spreaders and infect dozens or even hundreds of other people, whereas other people infected by the virus do not appear to infect many others even when conditions seem to favor that. Super-spreader events have occurred at weddings, church gatherings and in similar venues. Clearly the virus spreads more effectively indoors or when people are in close proximity but not moving (as in a crowd attending an event).

    To get back to herd immunity with coronaviruses, BBD’s estimate of 7.6 per cent infected means that around 60-70% of the US population need to become infected fairly soon to achieve the threshold necessary for herd immunity (if indeed as I have said that there is immunity after infection and how long it will persist when the virus is constantly evolving). Moreover, as I have also said, it appears that people who were only lightly infected may have no immunity at all. The list of unknowns is enormous with Covid-19.

    Until we know more, and know the true IFR (a study described yesterday suggested that reported Covid-19 deaths in the US may underestimate the true death toll by as much as 28%), and a vaccine is available, then social distancing and lockdowns are essential in protecting health services and the vulnerable from the virus. We are seeing what happens when states open up for business while the R0 value is still greater than one. It seems likely that the US will exceed 100,000 new infections per day soon. A disaster, overseen by the worst President in US history. Noam Chomsky did a great interview yesterday on the malignancy of the Trump administration and its handling of the pandemic, of civil unrest, and the response to climate change. A repugnant President and administration across the board.

    1. JeffH, we know the latest date of the virus’s arrival in the US is Jan 15, of someone from Wuhan who flew into Seattle. They tested his fellow passengers on an airport shuttle, and all were negative, but it was suspected that the testing was flawed and this is the source of the nursing home infections in Seattle. I’ve read the dominant form is a mutation from Europe, but don’t know if a date has been placed on arrival to US.

      ‘Superspreaders’ – I thought this just meant people who socialize more. Is it referring to ability to transmit compared to others who have the same socialization?

    2. > that the US will exceed 100,000 new infections per day soon.

      Excellent. Perhaps then schools will reopen normally by September.

  79. The leak appears to have been timed to sabotage plans to withdraw from Afghanistan.

    At least you are consistent in your asinine, unsupportable, conspiracies, from “deep state” bullshit to crap about covid 19.

    Not ever believable, never supported by facts, but consistent.

    1. When I try your link I get this error (latest version of Firefox)

      An error occurred during a connection to eagenda.collincountytx.gov. Peer using unsupported version of security protocol.

      Error code: SSL_ERROR_UNSUPPORTED_VERSION

    2. That’s strange. I am using Firefox and it is loading for me. Mine is probably an older version. It is flashing a different title first. Can’t tell if it is an error message or something else.

  80. MikeN, your comments are puerile rubbish, not really worthy of a polite response. You can try and trivialize 130,000 deaths and rising, but all it makes you look is even more idiotic. Your gish-gallops are becoming tedious.

    1. The rising toll is down 80% from peak. It would be a different matter if the daily deaths goes back up to 2000 daily. So far the numbers have stayed below 1000, with 624 today on CDC site. That is more than two weeks of at least 30,000 cases a day, and nearly three weeks of 20,000. We’ll see how much numbers rise over the next two weeks from these new 500,000 cases.

    2. The toll is down because the most vulnerable populations (old, infirm) have seen the effect of the virus and are being more vigilant than they were previously. However the young, the stupid, and the Republican (yeah, some tautology…) are recalcitrantly refusing to observe appropriate caution, and the virus is spreading like wildfire through much of the USA. If strict measures aren’t reinstated soon it will get so out of hand that many of those trying to avoid it will fail, and the daily mortality will again rise.

      Watch the second half of July, and soon after, for some bad news…

  81. The odour of desperation from the COVID deniers is getting stronger as the public health disaster in the US evolves.

    Coincidental, of course.

  82. “Re: MikeN “Tyvor, I am talking about what was happening in January and February. If the disease is as highly contagious as JeffH implies, then we should have had many more cases in those months. 50,000 to 100,000 cases daily that we have now should have been the case then with no social distancing or masks, probably even more infections. . . .”
    = =
    I expect that the mathematics of Covid-19 infection has been studied by the experts in disease transmission here and elsewhere as much as the data will allow. I wonder what conclusions they have been able to reach. It does seem that, (a) since the U. S. part of the pandemic was likely begun by a very few people and (b) the incubation period is, we are told, about 10-14 days, and (c) two months is only about 4 to 6 incubation periods, that there should be a slow start. Factor in the slow start in testing and I would expect even more delay in seeing the curve steepening. The flu in California you mention would combine with the lack of testing in effect because mild cases of Covid-19 could easily be misdiagnosed as “normal” flu in the absence of testing.
    = = =

    Re: “. . . Perhaps we did, and the virus just isn’t that deadly. I read that California had a bad flu season. However, the death toll from something like that would have been noticed I think.”
    = =
    A lesser lethality (if that’s the right word) would be a good thing. Initially, I think, Covid-19 was referred to as ten times more lethal than seasonal flu, which, according to the CDC is as follows:
    “While the impact of flu varies, it places a substantial burden on the health of people in the United States each year. CDC estimates that influenza has resulted in between 9 million – 45 million illnesses, between 140,000 – 810,000 hospitalizations and between 12,000 – 61,000 deaths annually since 2010.” – – – Disease Burden of Influenza | CDC
    http://www.cdc.gov

    So far, with our low number of tests per million population in the U. S., we have no hard number for how many cases we actually have and had, but we see no signs of Covid-19 seasonality, What we have is already about 130,000 deaths attributed to it. This already puts us at about twice the largest number of annual deaths (since 2010).

    Seems lethal enough to me. I hope my grandsons don’t go back on campus this Fall.

    1. I agree if the spreading is only by symptomatic people. If asymptomatic can spread, then the 10-14 day lag doesn’t apply.

    2. Mike, I’m struggling to believe that you persist in trying to minimize the seriousness of the CV pandemic.

      The facts and figures are literally everywhere. You would have to be blind and deranged not to understand the risk to health services in every affected country. But here you are, day in, day out, endlessly trying to pretend that nothing too much is amiss.

      There’s partisan bollocks and there’s outright lunacy. You are crossing the line. Sorry to be blunt, but it needs saying.

  83. MikeN, the infection rate from Covid-19 is around 2.0 to 3.0. This has been confirmed from a slew of studies. The hard thing is knowing if everyone who has the virus is able to transmit it with the same ease. Yesterday it was reported that a 51 year old man with diabetes in California died only 24 hours after showing symptoms of Covid-19. He had attended a party a few weeks ago and was infected there. Apparently, one if his friends who attended the party had just tested positively for Covid-19 but as he was presymptomatic, he called his friend and said he’d like to attend the party because he didn’t think that he was capable of infecting others under those conditions.

    He was clearly wrong and now they are desperately trying to track others who attended the party. As Tyvor said, this is not a seasonal virus and several factors are increasing the infection rate in the US: more testing for sure is a factor, but a premature end to the lockdowns while the infection rate was over 1.0 was also critical. Also, the age demographic of infections has shifted towards younger people who are less likely to die from infection, accounting for the declining death rate. It appears that out of frustration many younger people are behaving more recklessly, and becoming infected as a result. Also, as Dean has said, the official death rate in Florida seems ridiculously low, given the demographics of the population there, and the fact that deaths described as due to the flu have gone way, way up suggests that there is a deliberate attempt to downplay the Covid-19 toll. A study I described yesterday says that the nationwide death toll from Covid-19 may be as much as 28% higher than official figures.

    This is a dangerous pathogen that not only is killing a large number of people but which is leaving a serious health legacy on many of those who survive it. How at this stage Covid-19 denial can exist is beyond comprehension. Then again, despite volumes of empirical evidence, climate science denial appears to be as strong as ever. The mind boggles.

  84. Greg, that previous comment is me, but tried posting using a different email address to see if it didn’t trigger auto-moderation.

    It did 🙁

  85. Re: MikeN “If asymptomatic can spread, then the 10-14 day lag doesn’t apply.”
    =
    It kind of does Mike. The Covid-19 case count has been and is still strongly focused on the symptomatic because of our lack of testing capability. So, for any given day the count at the end of that day does not include many infected within the last let’s say 10 days. The count, therefore, is always behind the reality.

    I haven’t seen anything recent about the amount of asymptomatic or only-slightly symptomatic infected so I can’t comment on that.

    I do think the death count so far is too high for abandoning caution. This is already much worse than the “normal” flu and is far from over. (I am not among those who sneer at flu deaths as of no importance.)

    1. Tyvor, this time lag matters for current counts, and particularly the death count.
      But the asymptomatic cases won’t show up in the case count for those 10 days, but they will still be spreading the disease, right?

  86. Re: MikeN “this time lag matters for current counts, and particularly the death count.
    But the asymptomatic cases won’t show up in the case count for those 10 days, but they will still be spreading the disease, right?
    = =
    Assuming that they are interacting with other people, yes, they will be spreading the disease to some but not necessarily all of these people. And these infected people will not be counted, in general, in either the daily infection or death counts until at least 10-14 days after the day they are infected. This means that your original point which was that the disease wasn’t spreading fast enough to be very transmissible was wrong or perhaps too premature.

    Without more testing than we’ve had (or probably will ever have given the lethargic and inadequate response by the Impeached President and his administration), we will never have a really accurate estimate for the total number of infectees (if that’s a word) or the death count. Anyone not symptomatic or with mild symptoms will likely be uncounted, as will any people who die at home or on the street without a home are probably not autopsied and their cause of death will not be known accurately if that is so. (I’m willing to be corrected on this. It’s just my cynical estimate based on our society’s high tolerance of the misfortune of other people.)

  87. Re: my most recent comment (reply to MikeN).
    = =
    It seems likely that there might be a lag time between the first “intake” of virus and enough virus to be transmissible in infective amounts. It is not yet known when or how much transmission takes place from those people who are asymptomatic or even for those with mild symptoms since most of U. S. testing is aimed at and largely restricted to those people who have definite symptoms, and even such people often have to wait for a long period to be tested or wait in vain because of the I.P.’s incompetence and lack of empathy.

  88. BBD replied to MikeN:

    Mike, I’m struggling to believe that you persist in trying to minimize the seriousness of the CV pandemic.

    Indeed and MikeN should take a look at this (I realise that including links is certain to invoke moderation), that is the price we pay for the actions of bigots it seems):

    Conventional wisdom suggests that when a sickness is mild, it’s not too much to worry about. But if you’re taking comfort in World Health Organization reports that over 80% of global Covid-19 cases are mild or asymptomatic, think again. As virologists race to understand the biomechanics of Sars-CoV-2, one thing is becoming increasingly clear: even “mild” cases can be more complicated, dangerous and harder to shake than many first thought.

    Think a ‘mild’ case of Covid-19 doesn’t sound so bad? Think again

    RickA should digest this information too.

    What these two apologists for the status quo don’t grasp is the impact on the rising generations, those with futures already blighted by the impacts of climate change and pollution. The necessary severe correction to humanities collective irresponsibility is degrading their lives and futures more severely than those that have gone before. And many of those aren’t doing so well.

    With four children, thirteen grandchildren (I still count the one who took his own life in despair, despair at the antics of those who refuse to grasp the realities of limits to actions) and six great grandchildren I am seeing, or rather hearing about, the impact every day. I figure I have the obligation to counter the likes of MikeN and RickA with robust responses, tough if they don’t care for the realities being shoved in their faces.

    1. That article refer to a study of people who had reported recurring symptoms. It’s not surprising that this group would consider themselves less healthy after coronavirus than before. There is a much larger group that is recovered fully.

      This is not that unique of an illness to justify this level of hysteria. It is similar to viruses already seen, only unlike regular flu, children are less susceptible.

      This research in Switzerland explains it well.
      https://archive.is/8rLzi

    2. This is not that unique of an illness to justify this level of hysteria.

      FFS will you just *think*.

      The numbers are clear: about 20% of people infected with CV become so ill they require hospital admission. Unconstrained infection rates will therefore collapse any health service in the world.

      Instead of bullshitting, you need to face the facts, because they are coming for you anyway.

  89. Mike, I’m struggling to believe that you persist in trying to minimize the seriousness of the CV pandemic.

    You are dangerously close to assuming that either mikeN or rickA are now, or have ever been, interested in an honest exchange of information or trying to learn anything. Deflection about the seriousness of covid 19 and its consequences, coupled with the asinine pushing of “get people sick so herd immunity can protect us” shows their lack of honesty and understanding.

  90. The abominably bad article by Beda M. Stadler cited by MikeN was written a month ago and now has a disclaimer. Stadler said that Sars-Covid-2 is a seasonal cold-like illness that exhibits seasonality and has ‘disappeared during the summer’. He was referring solely to Switzerland, where he is based and where lockdowns were strict and account for the sharp decline in the infection rate. Nowhere does Stadler mention this. The disclaimer at the top of the article says that the commentary applies only to Switzerland, and not necessarily to other countries, an embarrassing attempt at damage-control given what is currently unfolding in the United States. Stadler was wrong, in other words. Everything he said was nonsense.

    Describing the coronavirus as the same as the flu for the elderly and less so for younger people is completely wrong, as plenty of data shows. The IFR across populations in the developed world is probably between 0.5 and 1.5%, or at least 10 times higher than the flu. Stadler needs to retire.

    1. The abominably bad article by Beda M. Stadler …

      I was pondering in what way could that article be an appropriate response to my post. But then that’s one of the tactics of the confabulator – bury the post with dark brown smelly stuff.

      I included RickA in the distribution list in response to his idea of calling for volunteers to undergo SARS-Cov-2 infections, has he volunteered yet?

  91. “In light of these findings, any proposed approach to achieve herd immunity through natural infection is not only highly unethical, but also unachievable,”

    The highly unethical and unachievable parts explain why this is rickA’s wet dream. It will be interesting to see whether other studies fall in line with this one.

    https://www.cnn.com/2020/07/06/health/spain-coronavirus-antibody-study-lancet-intl/index.html?utm_source=fark&utm_medium=website&utm_content=link&ICID=ref_fark

    1. You are dodging the point:

      – Hospitals in state after state are now at or out of ICU capacity because of new CV admissions

      True / False

      – Covid infection, unchecked is exponential

      True / False

      – Unchecked Covid infections will therefore overwhelm all hospitals in all states

      True / False

      Think it through.

  92. So what if it is 8%? How does that translate into numbers? It is huge! Do 8% of people with the flu require hospitalization? It is not even close, I am sure of it. Furthermore, a lot of people who are infected by Covid-19 and who don’t end up in hospital nevertheless show a lasting legacy of the infection. The mother of a colleague here had Covid-2 in March. She is in her 50s and, according to her daughter, went through a serious infection of the virus at home. Since recovering, her daughter told me that she is not the same. She has trouble breathing still and cannot walk long distances like she did with her dog before getting Covid-19. This example must be the tip of an iceberg; likely there are hundreds of thousands of people like this lady already who are allegedly recovered but in truth not recovered physically at all.

    Try as much as you like MikeN to marginalize or downplay the health effects of Covid-2. It doesn’t work. This is a serious pathogen and must be treated as such. By November it is now projected that the death toll from Covid-19 in the US alone will exceed 200,000. And you trivialize it?

    1. Not long ago, in his eagerness to cause some change in the dismal economy that for which he can take credit, our ever-lying I. P. pulled the number 99% out of somewhere and asserted (by executive order?) that this is the percentage of Covid-19 which is “totally harmless”. That is meant, I suppose, to sooth the anxieties of people who are afraid to go back to work )in meatpacking plants etc.) and even more afraid to send their children to schools in a country where the majority of states are posting record new infection numbers.

      Tonight it was reported on MSNBC that in Houston TX, there are significant numbers of people who have died in their homes of what it is now concluded to have been Covid-19. The night before it was reported that Covid-19 has an affinity for invading the circulatory system, enhancing blood clotting and therefore a dangerous a source of aneurysm. So, lungs, kidneys, heart, brain; all are threatened by Covid-19.

  93. RickA and MikeN

    Stop it with this deflection now. You are both talking out of your fundament refusing to engage with the arguments.

    Neurologists are on Wednesday publishing details of more than 40 UK Covid-19 patients whose complications ranged from brain inflammation and delirium to nerve damage and stroke. In some cases, the neurological problem was the patient’s first and main symptom.

    The cases, published in the journal Brain, revealed a rise in a life-threatening condition called acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (Adem), as the first wave of infections swept through Britain. At UCL’s Institute of Neurology, Adem cases rose from one a month before the pandemic to two or three per week in April and May. One woman, who was 59, died of the complication.

    “We’re seeing things in the way Covid-19 affects the brain that we haven’t seen before with other viruses,” said Michael Zandi, a senior author on the study and a consultant at the institute and University College London Hospitals NHS foundation trust.

    Source

    Have you volunteered your services for trials yet RickA?

  94. BBD, I will say FALSE, TRUE, FALSE.

    The stress on hospitals is coming from the delayed procedures caused by coronavirus closures of the hospitals to elective surgeries. Also people were too scared to come in, but the openings have signalled an all-clear and they are coming in sicker than before.
    Hospitalizations due to COVID are up about 50% from the low in mid June, but still 30% below the April peak. The new cases are milder/younger and are not stressing hospitals as much. Plus this is not being reported, so I don’t know the magnitude, but hospitals are testing all inpatients, so many of these cases are hospitalized for another reason.

    Unchecked coronavirus is only a hospital stress if the exponential in cases leads to exponential in hospitalizations. With the younger profile of positive tests, I would expect a smaller percentage of hospitalization to cases, and a smaller duration in the hospital.

    We’ll see how much of increase in numbers we get over the next week, but I don’t think cases is the primary number we should be looking at.

    1. The stress on hospitals is coming from the delayed procedures caused by coronavirus closures of the hospitals to elective surgeries.

      No, that’s only a part of it. The real pressure on hospitals is an increasingly severe pressure on intensive care capacity as CV hospitalisations spiral.

      The correct answers are True, True and True, as you are about to find out.

      Or are you slyly hoping this will be prevented by the reversion to lockdowns across the US as infections and hospitalisations soar, allowing you to pretend, dishonestly, that you were right all along? If I had to guess, I think that’s what you are up to.

    2. BBD, it doesn’t matter if they reimpose lockdowns. The deaths would be baked in.
      We have had cases go up past 30,000 a day for weeks, and are now at 60,000 cases a day.
      If these are the same as before, then we should expect deaths to reach over 2,000 daily, and probably 3,000 since we still have cases from the previous months.

      Hospitalizations have not gone up proportional to the increase in cases. There has been a 50% increase, despite a quadrupling of cases.

    3. Correction, the last three days has seen a big jump in hospitalizations, so the differential between cases and hospitalized is not as high. Now it is 2x hospitalized vs 4x cases.
      Strangely, the cumulative hospitalizations has gone up by much less, but this may just be a glitch.

    4. BBD, it doesn’t matter if they reimpose lockdowns. The deaths would be baked in.

      Once again you’ve flipped from hospitalisation rates to deaths.

      You’ve also ignored the fact that lockdowns DO matter as they reduce the infection rate from exponential which will hopefully prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed.

      Either you are being disingenuous, or you don’t understand this at all.

  95. RickA, there are currently about 40,000 hospitalized in the US, as seen from the link I posted, though it is not going to the specific table I intended.

    1. MikeN:

      Yes – I did see that. I took a stab at trying to verify the numbers and ran into trouble. Not all states are doing a good job tracking the recovered numbers, so it makes me wonder how they are doing tracking the hospitalized numbers.

      I took a look at CA and they show 5989 hospitalized COVID-19 plus another 1510 suspected COVID-19 patients. This adds up to the number in your link (for CA), so it looks ok. But then I have trouble reconciling that with worldometer – just the USA would be about 4/5 of the total hospitalizations worldwide, and we are only about 35.65% of the active cases worldwide – so that doesn’t quite make sense. Maybe serious critical (15392 for USA of 58261 worldwide) is only the ICU patients?

      Anyway – say 40,000 are hospitalized in the USA and say there are 1,627,419 active COVID-19 cases (confirmed by test) in the USA – that would be 2.46% hospitalized.

      2.4% is a lot less than 8% or 20%.

      I think the hospitalization rate would be a good number to keep track of for the USA – I hope it gets easier to track. I wish John Hopkins included hospitalization data.

    2. According to the link Mike provided there are about 3.1 million infections cumulative in the US and 255k cumulative hospital admissions. That’s 8.2%.

      You need to compare the cumulative totals to get the best answer the admittedly patch data can yield.

    3. RickA, 8% includes those who left the hospital, either because of death or recovery, perhaps even moving to another facility.
      40,000 is the number currently hospitalized.
      If the younger infected are less serious, they would move out of hospital faster as well.

  96. BBD, he did answer the question – with his silence. MikeN knows the answers ate all True. Essentially he knows that you are right, but to admit so conflicts heavily with his right wing ideology. So again, the silence. Anyone who claims that Covid-19 is no more serious than the flu is crazy. One just needs to see what is unfolding in the southern and western US now to realize that it is a very dangerous, contagious pathogen.

    1. Also note how these clowns have stopped using Sweden as the example of how things should have been done.

  97. So SCOTUS lets the Vance grand jury have Trump’s tax returns, and John Roberts tells Trump in the process that the president is not above the law. And not by 5-4, but by 7-2…

    I seem to remember some Trumpist lawyer types predicting that the Barr absolutist stance would prevail. Unfortunately for Trump that is not the case, and he’s likely going to face indictments once he leaves the Oval Office.

    It seems that not all the wheels of justice have stopped turning…

    1. Re: BBD “I seem to remember some Trumpist lawyer types predicting that the Barr absolutist stance would prevail.”

      It is mind-boggling to even consider how someone could come to such a conclusion, let alone expect that any non-corrupt court could rule in favor of such a stance. Considering that the American Revolution was a result of dissatisfaction with a government in which the governed had no direct representation in Parliament and the head of state was a king (or queen) usually put in place as a result of his/her lineage, it is unlikely in the extreme that the Chief Executive, i. e. the President, in the American Constitutional framework would be given or expected to have “absolute power,” be “above the law,” or any other similar prerogative by a Constitutional convention. If such a Presidency had been intended, why would there would have been an advise and consent role for the Senate, why give the House of Representatives the power of the purse and the power of impeachment, and why provide a mechanism for overruling a Presidential veto? It makes no sense. If they had wanted a king they already had one. No need to declare independence.

  98. I see that more and more hospitals in the surging states are declaring that their ICUs are near or even at capacity. Apparently, once again, reality is unwilling to take its cue from the happy talk (i.e., lies) our Impeached President and his Vice President constantly spews. (I won’t post link, any legitimate news source will provide that information.)*

    *Any source the I. P. calls “fake” is almost certainly a legitimate source.

  99. Since it seems we are going to get sick anyway, doesn’t managed herd immunity to try to protect the old and sick look like a good idea?

    1. RickA,

      1) What gives you the idea that “we are all going to get sick”? The spread of this virus, even the U. S. and other do-nearly-nothing countries are nowhere near a point where herd immunity is on the horizon. Delay and waiting for a vaccine and/or really effective therapies is still our best option to avoid unnecessary deaths and chronic Covid-19-related problems among survivors.

      2) And “managed herd immunity”? Who is going to do the “managing”? Who can be trusted to do that “managing”? Trump and his administration have shown no ability to manage the pandemic. He gave up on that weeks ago and is now simply and obviously lying about how “well” we’re doing thanks to him. Based on what evidence do you think he would be any better at it if given a second term?

      3a) Are you thinking of volunteers to get the virus? As the death toll in the U. S. mounts into the millions — as it would have to do in order to have enough of the population infected to even come close to herd immunity, volunteers will become harder and harder to find. In order to reach “herd immunity” without simply abandoning anything approaching a democratic government would require a draft, just as is necessary in great wars.

      3b) That draft would have to include about 60% of the population within a relatively short time, wouldn’t it? Otherwise, herd immunity would take more time than it was worth. How would the infection rate be “managed”?

      3c) And once a draftee got the virus and survived, he/she would have to be discharged so that a replacement could be drafted to do the same. Just how would sufficient hospitalization be provided for draftees so that more of them could survive. Or would that be left to chance in “managed herd immunity”?

      3d) We are already seeing overstressed hospitals in many places and deaths among hospital workers are occurring leaving gaps which will need to be replaced? How will these things be “managed”?

      Before we abandon the idea (now or after a new President is elected) of implementing the kinds of actions that have achieved success in the E.U. and elsewhere, all of those questions above need to be answered.

    2. First, you seem deaf to the issue of hospitals being overwhelmed because of the ideologically-motivated premature end to lockdown.

      Second, the evidence is growing that immunity from infection is short-lived.

      So perhaps it’s time to stop wittering about ‘managed herd immunity’.

    3. Since it seems we are going to get sick anyway…

      People are “getting sick” in the USA purely because of the gross mismanagement of the Trump administration, and of the support of ignorant fluffers like you, who support Trump regardless of the idiocy of his policies and the egregiousness of his incompetence.

      …doesn’t managed herd immunity…

      There’s no way to “manage” herd immunity when the infection is as manifestly uncontrolled as it is in the US (but note how New York, which was pilloried in the beginning by Republicans, has managed to get on top of the spread…).

      There’s no way to “manage” herd immunity when an effective vaccine might not be available for 6, 12, 18 months or more.

      There’s no way to “manage” herd immunity when a vaccine might not even ever be effective.

      There’s no way to “manage” herd immunity when a vaccine effect might not last more than a year or so.

      … try to protect the old and sick look like a good idea?

      You’re already looking at the mortality and the serious morbidity of millions of US American citizens. And this ignores the fact that when medical facilities are overwhelmed with COVID cases other patients are just as badly affected, or worse. This includes the victims of accidents, of heart attacks, of cancer, and of any other condition that requires urgent hospital treatment. The death toll from COVID-19 will be far greater than the number of those who die from coronavirus.

      You have the thinking of an ideologue whose world view is immutable, is not based on reality, and is completely refractory to fact and to other people’s circumstances.

  100. doesn’t managed herd immunity

    You haven’t fucking paid attention at all have you? What an asshole you continue to be.

  101. RickA, in answer to your question, for the millionth time, NO.

    Herd immunity cannot be ‘managed’. Right now the ‘management’ strategy of the morally bankrupt US government is to let it run amok, overwhelming health care systems and killing hundreds of thousands of people. Aside from Brazil, whose leader is nuts, the rest of the world is looking at the US with horror.

    Stop being so stupid.

  102. BBD, you accused me of wanting to use reimposition of lockdowns and the resulting reduction to claim that I was right all along.
    My responses is that reimposing lockdowns would not help me claim that I was right, as the deaths are baked in from the existing infections.
    We now have a big jump for weekend numbers, so we’ll see how big the numbers are for the weekdays and if we get to 2000-3000 as expected from the high number of cases.

    1. BBD, you accused me of wanting to use reimposition of lockdowns and the resulting reduction to claim that I was right all along.
      My responses is that reimposing lockdowns would not help me claim that I was right, as the deaths are baked in from the existing infections.

      Are you doing this on purpose?

      As I have already stated:

      You flipped from hospital admissions – the topic under discussion – to deaths.

      The number of hospital admissions will increase until the healthcare system is overwhelmed unless the exponential infection rate is curbed by lockdowns.

      Deaths – baked in or otherwise – have nothing whatsoever to do with the issue of hospitals being overwhelmed because stupid rightwing ideologues forced the US out of lockdown much too soon.

      That is the topic under discussion here.

      Either pay attention and stick to the topic under discussion or shut up.

    2. My point is that I can’t look good with reduced hospitalizations if the number of deaths jumps to 3000 daily.
      You are correct that I think hospitalizations(and hospital patient-days) is a more useful metric than cases.

    3. My point is that I can’t look good with reduced hospitalizations if the number of deaths jumps to 3000 daily.

      Hospitalisations will tail off first after a couple of weeks of lockdown, deaths thereafter. Lockdown reduces infections below exponential. It keeps hospitals open and functioning, if only just.

      This is a dynamic and ongoing process which can be modified by public health choices. As I said earlier, either you don’t understand this or you are hoping that good policy choices will get you out of a hole even though you are advocating stupid and dangerous policy choices.

  103. MikeN, you have never been right on anything. You have for weeks here tried to downplay the seriousness of Covid-19 (and failed) and repeatedly tried to smear Anthony Fauci, blaming him for the current chaotic US response (and failed).

    Give it a rest.

  104. Take note of this story:

    https://pbswisconsin.org/news-item/usps-audit-finds-issues-few-irregularities-in-april-absentee-ballots/

    They had problems printing the ballots at the state end. They had problems addressing the ballots at the state end. The post office had trouble delivering the ballots (admittedly it was last minute).

    It looks like states without a history of large numbers of people using mail-in-voting are going to have trouble this Nov. 2020. Also, if you want to vote by mail you should request your ballot as early as possible and mail it back as early as possible, to make sure your vote gets counted. You will probably want to study up to make sure you do it correctly and follow all of the required procedures. It probably wouldn’t hurt to verify your voter registration information either.

    It is probably time to figure out how to allow voting by electronic device (computer, tablet or cell phone). I know fraud would be an issue on the state end and on the voter end, so that would have to be addressed. But I wonder if hackers would be able to hack millions of cell phones individually to fake a person’s vote? It seems like it would be about as safe as mail voting and so much faster, both for voting and for counting. Also, it would be easy to ensure each voter only voted once! Anyway – it would be nice if they could figure out a secure way to vote electronically. Not for this election but maybe for 2024 and beyond.

    Anyway – mail-in-voting is probably going to be a very huge mess this Nov. 2020 – which is to bad, as we don’t need that on top of everything else.

  105. ” I know fraud would be an issue on the state end and on the voter end”

    No, neither you nor I know that. The fact that there hasn’t been “widespread fraud” in previous elections casts doubt on it, but you are right to be concerned about voting security.

    You should be concerned about the electronic voting machines that haven’t had their code vetted by outside sources — we know they can be easily hacked. You should be concerned about the machines that don’t provide a paper trail, or any other trail, for vote verification.

    Microsoft has developed voting software that is open for review as as check for issues. (I know conspiracy folks will panic at that name, but if you buy into conspiracies you don’t have a good understanding of things anyway.) After a vote is cast the information is encrypted (homomorphic encryption) in a way that allows vote counting to done without decrypting the information. The voter gets a key that lets them verify a) that their vote was counted, and b) that it went to the person it was supposed to go to. The last I read two companies, Clear Ballot and Voting Works, manufacturers of voting systems, were looking at Microsoft’s program.

    The Open Source Election Technology group is also working on a secure system. Both of those have been getting good reviews from outside reviewers. There is another software (Heliose or Helios, I’m not familiar with it) that is said to be complete, and open source.

    Why am I harping on open source systems? Because the code is presented for people other than the authors to look at and try to break. Finding weaknesses in your own code is far harder than trying to find errors in your own writing.

    But I wonder if hackers would be able to hack millions of cell phones individually to fake a person’s vote?

    Sim hacking to get into a phone is fairly easy to do, and inexpensive, but whether it could be done on the scale of millions of phones is something I don’t know. If voting by phone were implemented the system would need to employ good encryption. Would people be willing to put another app on their phone? I don’t know — look at the freak out that some people had when they learned that Apple and Google had put “covid tracking software” on their phones when nothing of the sort had happened.

    1. Yes – adoption of voting by smartphone would be an issue.

      I know I would look seriously at doing it.

      I file my taxes electronically, even though I know the issues of fraud (so far no problems).

      I just feel that smartphone voting would be much easier than voting by mail, faster, allow for faster counting and therefore faster election results.

      I hope they are looking at this for the 2024 election.

      The paper mailed in ballots don’t even have to get to the polling place until 3 days after vote day, so we would have to wait a minimum of 3 days to know who won (assuming a large number of ballots were cast by mail). That would be totally different than the usual election results for the last 10 or so presidential elections and would be quite unsatisfying.

    2. By the way – when I say fraud would be an issue I mean that people would worry that hackers could control the state end and modify the votes as they came in, plus people would worry about hackers tampering with the voters smartphones at the voting end.

      I doubt that this wouldn’t be a worry which needs to be addressed – but if you don’t think this would be an issue that is ok with me.

      I just think evoting would be a better path to pursue than mail in voting – both of which have potential fraud issues to worry about. I would rather work to fix the fraud issues on the faster method of avoiding crowded polling places.

    3. The fact that there hasn’t been “widespread fraud” in previous elections casts doubt on it, but you are right to be concerned about voting security.

      Greg Palast, amongst others, has written much on the topic of voter suppression and rigged ballot boxes, his ‘The Best Democracy Money Can Buy’ was a good read there is much more where I found this:

      Purges Will ‘Screw’ 16.7 Million out of their Right To Vote

    4. The closing of ballot sites by the right and voting purges done with the intent to disenfranchise minorities, the poor, and the elderly, aren’t what I was including as voting fraud. There is no doubt that those issues must be dealt with, but I was concentrating on the mechanics of handling votes once they are cast (casted votes?)

  106. Or they could just do paper ballots of people voting in person, opening more polling stations to eliminate these lines.
    No punch cards where someone can just send a needle through a whole stack to nullify one candidate’s votes.

    1. Right. There would still be in person voting, and in Minnesota almost all our voting equipment is optical scanner paper ballot based systems.

      I was talking about how to avoid going to the in person voting polling places (if that is your desire) and looking at evoting as an option to mail in ballots (for 2024 and beyond).

      I will be voting in person in Nov. 2020 because I just don’t trust that my vote will be counted if I were to use a mail in ballot.

  107. “I will be voting in person in Nov. 2020 because I just don’t trust that my vote will be counted if I were to use a mail in ballot”.

    Given that you will likely be voting for the liar-misogynist-racist-sexist-scum-in-chief and his Party of crooks, maybe it is better if you were to use a mail ballot and your ballot is lost. After all, you want to see the worst POTUS in history back in office, all primed to continue destroying the environment, concentrating wealth, ravaging health care, escalating threats against China, race-baiting, encouraging right wing extemists, and doing other serious harm to the reputation of the US abroad.

    1. MikeN:

      That is a very large number.

      Fraud or no fraud – that is troubling.

      Well we will see how mail in voting works with large numbers of ballots this fall. I suspect it will not work very well at all. It is really only designed (it seems to me) for very small numbers of votes – absentee voters and districts with very small numbers of voters (I believe less than 400). So when 1/2 or even more of the votes are cast by mail (if that were to happen), I suspect the whole system will break down and chaos will result.

      No point in watching the election results on TV – that is for sure.

    2. Rooting for the Trump lie about rigged elections now Ricky? How predictable you are. Anything to keep the old monster in power eh?

      You actually reading the debunk dean posted and not posting dishonest Trumpist shite would be too much to hope for.

  108. Well we will see how mail in voting works with large numbers of ballots this fall. I suspect it will not work very well at all. It is really only designed (it seems to me) for very small numbers of votes – absentee voters and districts with very small numbers of voters (I believe less than 400). So when 1/2 or even more of the votes are cast by mail (if that were to happen), I suspect the whole system will break down and chaos will result.

    Making unsupportable assertions of fraud and breakdowns of systems that match right wing ignorance trumps facts all the time.

    1. I am telling you what I think will happen. I like the concept of evoting better than mail in voting – but I think we have to deal with issues of hacking on both the state end (the end receiving the votes) and the voter end. If you don’t think hacking will be an issue with evoting – well ok, you get to think whatever you want.

      I think that millions of mail in ballots will be difficult for our systems to handle. Again, if you disagree – that is ok with me. I am happy to wait and see what happens this fall.

    2. Yet not a word about the gerrymandering and voter suppression long engaged in by the Republicans to gain unfair advantage in elections.

      Not a word about the general undemocratic advantage the wretched Electoral College gives Republicans in Presidential elections. To the extent that Trump could lose the popular vote by 3,000,000 votes and still end up fouling the Oval Office with his presence.

      Not a word.

      Just unfounded speculative dreck which coincidentally happens to harmonise with Trump’s lies about FRAUD in Nov 2020.

      Just pure coincidence.

  109. Studies carried out in the UK and Germany do indeed show that immunity to Covid-19 may only last a few months. From the NL Times:

    ‘”The [UK and German] research shows that the antibodies to corona go down quickly after the infection. This happens after a few months, which is fast,” Marion Koopmans, virologist and member of the [Dutch] government’s Outbreak Management Team, said to RTL Nieuws. “This is not to say that people who have had the virus have no protection at all.”

    Professor of immunology Marjolein van Egmond agrees. “Obviously you would have preferred that it was different, that those antibodies remain at the same level for two years and protect people against infection. But that does not necessarily mean that people didn’t build up immunity to Covid-19 when they had the disease,” she said to NOS.

    [This] will have consequences for how the virus is approached. For example, group immunity is off the table. This is also a setback for the plasma program, in which researchers are looking into whether Covid-19 can be treated with antibody-containing blood of recovered patients. “From this research it can be concluded that you will certainly not be able to use that blood for very long,” Koopmans said’.

    ‘GROUP IMMUNITY IS OFF THE TABLE’. I hope those words sink in, RickA. This is the crap you have been pushing on here for months now. The key is to keep the curve as flat as possible, develop a vaccine and give annual injections to the most vulnerable. The findings of these studies also suggest that many who have recovered from it will soon be susceptible to infection again. Again, this puts the ‘herd immunity’ approach to bed once and for all.

    1. Jeffh:

      It is my understanding that the study you are referring to is only looking at B cell immunity, and didn’t look at T cell immunity.

      So all this study is saying is the antibody levels have declined – not that in fact there is no immunity to the same strain of COVID-19.

      We don’t know that just because the antibody levels decline that there is no protection (via T cell immunity) to COVID-19.

      We could do a study and try to reinfect people with COVID19 – but I suspect there might be some ethical issues that would prevent that.

      In the meantime, all we can do is gather the data and see if anybody has actually gotten reinfected. From what I have read – this is not the case. Everytime a test has shown positive for COVID-19 in a reinfection it was just picking up dead virus stuff from the patient – not an active reinfection.

      So don’t panic yet.

      I still think it would be worthwhile to only use cured people to take care of the old in nursing homes and the non-COVID sick at hospitals and try to manage herd immunity. If you disagree that is ok with me.

      I don’t think herd immunity has been put to bed at all.

    2. Greg says “Being able to detect antibodies is the same thing a immunity being not there.”

      I think there is a typo here – because I don’t understand what you are trying to say. Could you rephrase?

      Did you mean to say – being able to detect antibodies is not the same thing as immunity not being there?

  110. Re: comment by RickA: “That is a very large number [of votes by mail]. Fraud or no fraud – that is troubling.”
    =
    I wonder if should be more troubling than many millions of people waiting in lines for hours to go into a venue where many, many people have already breathed whatever viruses they have into the air and from there to settle on voting machines and other touchable things?

    Should it be more troubling than the the Red states’ purging of voter rolls (e.g. WI, GA), elimination of polling places in areas likely to vote Democratic, and shortening of voting periods? Were the recent voting debacles in Georgia and Kentucky not real problems for a supposedly democratic country?

    Should it be more troubling than an Impeached President and a far-from-spotless Vice President asserting that the pandemic is being well managed and that it is safe to send many millions of children back to schools without following CDC guidelines for safety and in many states where virus cases are skyrocketing?

    Should it be more troubling than nothing being done by the I. P.’s administration to protect our elections from Russian (or any other countries’ tampering via social media and feeding of disinformation to the print and broadcast media?

  111. 36 straight days of >20000 new cases
    27 straight days of >30000 new cases
    21 straight days of >40000 new cases
    15 straight days of >50000 new cases
    9 straight days of >60000 new cases

    Yet deaths have stayed below 1000 daily(barely).
    The caseload is clearly not as concerning as the same number would have been in April or May.

    1. It’s just getting going again. On its way back to exponential, at which point, you will start losing hospitals.

      And deaths are lagged 3 – 5 weeks behind reported cases.

      No matter how much you try to bullshit this away, it won’t go away. It will just get worse and worse and worse.

      Right now, lockdowns are the only way to roll back the infection rate. So the economy is going to take it in the neck, hard, again (and again: WW).

      Those who are trying to make political capital out of the economy are fucked.

    2. Florida has been setting daily records for new cases and deaths.

      Equally concerning is the initial news of test results for school children there: of the children tested over 30% have had positive results.

      https://thehill.com/changing-america/well-being/prevention-cures/507442-almost-one-third-of-florida-children-tested-are

      But hey, let them start schools as usual because there’s no risk. This is one of the rare times BBD has been wrong: people (like mikeN and rickA) who lie about this and try to make political hay aren’t fucked, they’re just fuckers.

  112. MikeN, you write as if 600 daily deaths on average is some kind of a success story. That translates into around 18,000 deaths per month. Project this to November and it means that well over 200,000 will have died in the US from this horrible pathogen. And it is still early days yet – by the end of this month the lag will be catching up.

    In truth, it is a monumental failure for Trump and his administration. Only has Brazil, and perhaps the UK, exhibited similar levels of incompetence. All three are populist, right wing regimes.

    1. mikeN and rickA are following the advice of reagan: repeat a lie (in this case, covid 19 is no big deal) often enough and people will forget it’s a lie. Sadly, that’s working with too many people.

    2. Only has Brazil, and perhaps the UK, exhibited similar levels of incompetence. All three are populist, right wing regimes.

      The Johnson regime in the UK has now more-or-less dismantled lockdown and so completely confused the public about safety rules that many people are simply behaving as if things are back to normal.

      The second wave is now pretty much a certainty. It remains to be seen whether the resulting carnage will deter my fellow countrymen from voting for yet another hard right Tory government next time around.

    3. dean:

      I don’t remember saying covid19 isn’t a big deal. In fact, I have been saying that since everybody is going to get sick anyway, why not manage it (and therefore manage herd immunity). I have been saying that all lockdowns are doing is delaying the infections, not stopping them – because as soon as lockdowns are lifted the infections start backup. I have been saying that longterm lockdowns are not possible, which has been born out by all of them being lifted, infections starting backup and some lockdowns partially reinstated in response.

      Isn’t that exactly what we are seeing. Nobody could maintain a full lockdown. Infections restarted and all we did was delay the infections for a month or two?

      By the time the vaccine gets to market (if one works – and hopefully several will) it could be next spring and we will have already reached herd immunity in the USA.

      Given that possibility – why not manage who gets sick and try to manage herd immunity to minimize the exposure of the old and sick, while getting the young and healthy cured and back to work.

      Just one person’s idea rather than letting people get sick whilly nilly.

    1. In which the author concludes:

      But again, it’s too early to determine what these findings all add up to. “We’ve only been dealing with this virus for seven months, so we’re just getting to know it,” Ostrosky says. We just don’t have enough evidence to know yet if or when COVID-19 can strike the same person twice and what that would mean for our chances of developing an effective, long lasting vaccine.

    2. BBD:

      I read that as saying we don’t know whether you can get COVID-19 twice. Not that people get it twice because of dropping antibody levels. YMMV.

  113. Since RickA brought up the topic of temporary immunity, this seems relevant:
    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/07/14/immunity-to-covid-19-uk-study.html

    I’ve seen references to other studies that have reached similar conclusions. If this is actually the norm, then herd immunity, managed or not, is likely never going to happen until and unless a vaccine is developed. People will be reinfected over and over.

    This is so grim a future that I hope someone can give me a reasonable alternative.

    1. I’ve heard an interesting suggestion: everytime some moron pushes for infecting people to get to herd immunity they need to break down how many people would need to be infected, how many would likely need hospitalization, how many would die, and so on.

      I know it wouldn’t bother people who don’t have any sense of decency, like mikeN and rickA, but it would show people reading their comments how stupid an idea it is.

  114. RickA, this is exactly the interpretation of Dutch epidemiologists commenting on the German/British studies. Their words: GROUP IMMUNITY IS OFF THE TABLE if these results are confirmed. I tend to trust their opinion over that of a lawyer/electrical engineer.

    More importantly, given the unknowns, it is insanity to pursue a herd immunity approach right now. It can only be done once a vaccine is available. It also appears that short-term immunity means vaccinations will have to be repeated annually. But, absent a vaccine, a herd immunity approach is out.

    1. Absent a vaccine – herd immunity is inevitable. That is how all prior corona virus have been defeated. Absent a vaccine, that is how this corona virus will be defeated.

      Absent a vaccine – the only question is whether we reach herd immunity in a managed or unmanaged fashion.

      Based on the speed of spread it looks like this will all be over (for the USA anyway) by March ish 2021.

    2. Absent a vaccine – herd immunity is inevitable.

      Herd immunity is not “inevitable” if the immune response to SARS-CoV-2 is short-lived. And if a short-lived response is the norm, an effective herd immunity can never really be achieved, even with a vaccine.

      That is how all prior corona virus have been defeated.

      Not all coronaviruses have been defeated. Most are merrily working their way through humanity (and other species), mutating into different strains, and ticking over as the same strains for generations as they encounter naïve populations.

      The other SARS/MERS coronaviruses that were “defeated” were controlled by intensive testing and isolation, and not by vaccines or herd immunity.

      Absent a vaccine, that is how this corona virus will be defeated.

      “Managed” herd immunity, if such can be acquired, would take years if excess deaths are to be prevented.

      “Unmanaged” herd immunity will result in tens-hundreds of thousands of excess deaths, and many of these deaths will be non-COVID disease/emergency cases that are unable to receive adequate medical attention because the hospitals are full of COVID cases: when there is an exponential growth of infections and 15-20% result in hospital admission, it is inevitable that accident victims, coronary cases, and other acute medical emergencies will be caught in a queue for longer than they’re able to survive without treatment.

      You explain to the friends and relatives of these hundreds of thousands – and perhaps millions – of people why their deaths were acceptable in order to achieve a herd immunity that might not even be fully effective in the long term.

  115. RickA

    As BBD quoted:

    “We’ve only been dealing with this virus for seven months, so we’re just getting to know it,”

    There is more:

    A hallmark of COVID-19 has been the speed with which some patients have crashed, going from feeling only a little sick to being unable to breathe, sometimes in the space of a few hours. Such a crash often necessitates intubation, a process that then renders one incapable of speaking. Many people on ventilators are also heavily sedated and unconscious, to keep them from pulling out the invasive tubes going down their throat. Thus, sometimes with little warning, all communication is lost, and more often than not, a patient is without family or loved ones when this happens.

    Source

    It amazes me that supposedly intelligent beings can still write the tripe that you do.

    Now just think about how a person can become infected by Covid twice, it isn’t much of a stretch.

    1. Well, I am pretty skeptical about the covid twice stuff. If people commonly get the same corona virus twice, I would think we would know that from our study of the common cold. It is my understanding that it is always a slightly different virus we get sick with – not the exact same strain.

      Still – I could be wrong, as I am not a Doctor or medical person.

      If people can get the same strain of COVID-19 twice, that would be very bad. I need more evidence than dropping antibody levels before I worry about it. So far I haven’t seen it.

      I am just worried about everybody getting it once – which it seems like we are on track for.

    2. Perhaps many are, but it is not a requirement that people be unconscious while on a ventilator. I know someone who was on a ventilator with a tracheostomy, unable to speak.
      Could still watch TV, and would write messages on paper, use a computer, etc.
      Sedation was done sometimes, painkiller other times.
      The risk of tube falling out was constant.

    3. There are reports available of people presenting with COVID infections twice. It’s still too early to determine whether this is widespread, but identifying such cases relatively early in a pandemic is extremely concerning, and especially so for a family of viruses where effective immunisation is known to be difficult.

      Further, there was a report last week that in a sample of COVID survivors (n = 1,216) 55% showed cardiac damage on being scanned. It’s currently unknown whether this damage is permanent, and the study has some limitations, but the implications for nation-sized populations is profound, and all the more so considering the other long-term morbidities that are emerging from COVID-19 case descriptions.

      Global evaluation of echocardiography in patients with COVID-19

      (https://academic.oup.com/ehjcimaging/article/doi/10.1093/ehjci/jeaa178/5859292)

      Only fools and sociopaths would be sanguine about letting SARS-CoV-2 run unchecked through a large population.

    4. Bernard says “Only fools and sociopaths would be sanguine about letting SARS-CoV-2 run unchecked through a large population.”

      “Letting”? Well then, just tell Covid-19 to stop. That should take care of it.

    5. “Letting”? Well then, just tell Covid-19 to stop. That should take care of it.

      No, effective and competent action would take care of it.

      And effective and competent action is exactly what’s missing from the Trump administration and from many of the Republican states that are following the Trump administration’s example. Consequently, and because they deliberately not only ignore but run counter to the best expert advice, they are consciously “letting” the virus kill tens of thousands of people who otherwise don’t need to have died, and they are letting millions of people become infected and suffer morbidity, who needn’t have become sick.

      Go buy yourself a clue.

    6. Bernard:

      Trump isn’t really in charge of COVID-19 – it is really the governors who are in charge (as I have said before). Trump can help, he can stop traffic to the USA, he can order PPE, he can talk up mask use (he was late on this task) and so forth – but Trump and the Federal government doesn’t have a general police power – that is reserved for the states. If Trump were to order the schools to reopen for in person teaching this fall, the states could tell Trump to pound sand (and most will) and there is nothing Trump can do. He only has the bully pulpit to try to convince the states to do what he wants – not the power to order it.

      As to the governors and individual states – do you really think this is a red/blue issue?

      California is blue, but has just passed New York for the most infections. Infections are rising again in Minnesota (my state – which is blue). Personally I don’t think this is a republican/democrat issue. ALL of the governors stopped the lockdowns after a month or so, and most are resisting a full lockdown again, because nobody can afford it. That is the reality on the ground (even in democrat states). So the virus is spreading (even in blue states) and will continue to spread until we reach herd immunity or deploy a vaccine (whichever comes first).

      At the rate at which the virus is spreading (especially if you multiply confirmed infections by 10), I question whether a vaccine will be available for the USA population before we reach herd immunity naturally.

  116. RickA, you are on track for getting it once because of the rank incompetence of Trump and his administration. A few weeks ago Pence, gushing in his praise of the liar-narcissist-in-chief, claimed that the virus was ‘under control’ and that by Memorial Day the worst ‘would be behind us’.

    How wrong Pence and his lying President were. The federal US government’s response to the pandemic has been abominable. The only reason Trump’s approval rating is still as high as it is (around 38%) is because his borderline racist, nativist rhetoric appeals to his clueless base. People worship cult leaders no matter how wretched they are and this is no exception. It is the same with Bolsonaro in Brazil. His borderline insanity is appealing to many who look at populists with reverence.

    Here in the Netherlands we have largely opened up (with social distancing and other measures to contain Covid-19 retained) and our daily infection rate is a fraction of that in the US. Quite honestly, the the US is being seen as a model of how not to deal with a pandemic. What an indictment of Trump.

    1. ““Letting”? Well then, just tell Covid-19 to stop. That should take care of it.”

      Says the asshole who also says its spread can be “managed” when he speaks of his (non) plan to achieve herd immunity. Once again, your immense stupidity comes through.

  117. BBD, if time lag is 3 weeks, then we should be over 2,000 additional deaths by now.
    If it is 5 weeks, that is 1000 additional deaths.

    1. When calculating “excess” deaths, in the sense that they’re caused by the virus, it’s important to factor in reductions in non-COVID-19 deaths that have occurred because of coronavirus-related measures. For example, isolation and social distancing are reducing violence and traffic accidents in some jurisdictions.

      It matters for many people how they actually die…

  118. RickA, I interpret Greg’s comment as ‘not having antibodies is not the same as not having immunity’, but not sure. He could be saying, ‘having antibodies is not the same as having immunity’.

    I’d like to see a comparison with other immunities. Does antibody level stay high forever?
    It makes sense that the antibodies are higher in the existence of an infection.

  119. JeffH, you are correct that the death count will produce tens of thousands of more deaths, perhaps hundreds of thousands. There has been an 80% drop from peak in daily deaths, that has gone up only slightly despite a massive increase in cases. Another 80% drop in deaths would put things at a more manageable level., but at this point that is just hoping for herd immunity to kick in.
    I said when deaths were at 60,000 that I think 200,000 was a possibility, and it looks like that will happen.

  120. “Waiting for herd immunity to iick in” quips MikeN.

    Good grief, can you read?! There is no evidence whatsoever that herd immunity will ever be reached or how long it will last! We do not know enough about this virus to make such bold assertions about it as you and RickA do. And how do you ‘manage’ deaths?! The health care system is already bursting at the seams in several US states.

    A vaccine is imperative before any kind of herd immunity strategy can be considered. If immunity, as the British and German studies suggest, is short-lived, then absent a vaccine, it might be necessary for 60% of the population to become infected over just 6 months or so. That won’t happen. This virus is clearly highly adaptive. What utter gibberish you write.

    What we know is that the death rate lags well behind the infection rate because the worst physiological effects of the virus occur up to several weeks after infection.

    You vastly overestimate your understanding of this pathogen. You are like a car without brakes, assuming this and assuming that on the basis of limited information and an even more limited knowledge base.

  121. “This will be all over (for the USA) by March 2021”.

    Rofl.

    RickA writes as if the British and German studies reporting that immunity lasts no longer than a few months do not exist. By March 2021 (aside from more than 300,000 dead in the US) many who were infected before September 2020 may have no residual immunity at all and will be infected again.

    So much for herd immunity. With this virus, there may be none at all.

    1. I’m not aware of any studies that reported that immunity lasts no longer than a few months.
      I saw a link above, but that study did not say that.

  122. MikeN, read the recent article in the Guardian by Ian Sinclair based in research at King’s Colleage, London. It stresses that immunity could be lost within a few months, meaning people can become infected year after year, as with the common cold. German research appears to be confirming this. There are caveats but these results are of concern. Throwing all of our eggs into the ‘herd immunity’ basket, absent a vaccine while knowing very little about this virus is madness, driving blindly in the dark. The only reason it is considered there now is because of the incompetence of the federal government.

    RickA claimed yesterday that the virus would effectively be gone from the US by March of next year. Like his orange idol and the Vice President, he makes bold predictions that do not come true. In late March Trump was proudly saying that the coronavirus would be fading under warmer April weather and that the churches would be able to open up by Easter.

    Epic fail.

    Pence was saying in early June that the virus curve was flattening and that the worst if it would be behind us by Memorial Day.

    Epic fail.

    So much for predictions. This virus does not seem to adhere to the wishes of those in power. Will it be gone by next March? Almost certainly not, even with some level of herd immunity. Seasonal flu has not miraculously disappeared; it still kills tens of thousands in the US every year. Why should Covid-19 be any different? Viruses are highly adaptive. This one is here to stay. We need to accept that and take the measures necessary to minimize its impact. In this context a vaccine is vitally important. Moreover, over a relatively short time viral virulence will probably decrease. Thus, the longer we can protect the most vulnerable, the better.

  123. MikeN

    I’m not aware of any studies that reported that immunity lasts no longer than a few months.

    So when you read something you don’t comprehend the message. try again with one quote from the article behind BBD’s link:

    Blood tests revealed that while 60% of people marshalled a “potent” antibody response at the height of their battle with the virus, only 17% retained the same potency three months later. Antibody levels fell as much as 23-fold over the period. In some cases, they became undetectable.

    “People are producing a reasonable antibody response to the virus, but it’s waning over a short period of time and depending on how high your peak is, that determines how long the antibodies are staying around,” said Dr Katie Doores, lead author on the study at King’s College London.

    The study has implications for the development of a vaccine, and for the pursuit of “herd immunity” in the community over time.

    This of course explains why you keep coming up with crank ideas.

    OK try this:

    An important new study released online this week could have a large bearing on how our future looks in 2021 and beyond.

    It suggests our immunity to SARS-CoV-2 does not last very long at all — as little as two months for some people. If this is the case, it means a potential vaccine might require regular boosters, and herd immunity might not be viable at all.

    Herd immunity might be in trouble

    So herd immunity may not be the solution some think. This is because if immunity is short-lived, we will be in an ongoing cycle of endless reinfection. For herd immunity to be effective we need a high percentage (perhaps more than 60%) of people to be immune at any one time to disrupt chains of transmission. This can’t happen if a lot of reinfection is occurring.

    Immunity to COVID-19 may not last. This threatens a vaccine and herd immunity

    Now I realise that both articles linked refer to the same, as yet non peer reviewed, study but to claim that you are not aware of any such study is false demonstrating at best that your are shallow or at worst a liar.

  124. Heads up for RickA and MikeN

    “I think that every single serology study that’s been done to date suggests that the vast majority of Americans have not yet been exposed to this virus,” Nuzzo said. “So we’re still very much in the early stages.

    “Which is good, that’s actually really good news. I don’t want to strive for herd immunity, because that means the vast majority of us will get sick and that will mean many, many more deaths. The point is to slow the spread as much as possible, protect ourselves as much as possible, until we have other tools.”

    But the ability of the US to take that basic step – to slow the spread, as dozens of other countries have done – is in perilous doubt. After half a year, the Trump administration has made no effort to establish a national protocol for testing, contact tracing and supported isolation – the same proven three-pronged strategy by which other countries control their outbreaks.

    Source

    Jennifer Nuzzo is an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, she may just know a little bit more than you pair of dolts.

  125. BBD, when you linked the study, you said it was evidence. JeffH seems to be reporting it as a certainty, though he did include ‘may’.
    I think Greg Laden’s reply was saying immunity is not from antibodies alone.

    1. And I think you are sounding increasingly desperate.

      As you should. There can be no doubt about where this curve is going.

      Time for a rethink. Time for an admission that you called it wrong, backed the wrong rat in the race. That is your only way out of this.

    2. I’m not sure why you think that chart is meaningful. I’ve already said I don’t think it’s a proper metric for evaluating things. Hospitalizations have not gone up in proportion, and neither have deaths, though you seem to think that is just a time lag.

    3. Swine flu had more cases daily than the current rate of COVID-19, but that didn’t require shutting down the economy. The death rate was much lower, and I submit to you that the current death rate from the new cases in your chart is much lower than what we saw in April and May.

    4. I’m not sure why you think that chart is meaningful.

      Because it is clearly an exponential. Do you really not understand what this means? Run it forward a month, then two, then three. Just *try* to think for once, instead of expending all your energies on defending indefensible ideologies and their consequences.

      I’ve already said I don’t think it’s a proper metric for evaluating things.

      You’ve also demonstrated an unfortunate tendency to misunderstand (I’m being generous) and minimise.

      Hospitalizations have not gone up in proportion, and neither have deaths, though you seem to think that is just a time lag.

      But both are rising, rapidly. Now you need to run that exponential projection forward a few months and think instead of pushing your political peanut.

      And it’s not *me* that thinks that hospitalisations and deaths lag reported infections; it is what the data show. It’s this thing we call a ‘fact’.

  126. It seems that both on this site and in the public arena there is a major battle between two approaches to problems such as our current coronavirus and our global warming problems: prepare for the worst and hope for the best versus assume the best and ignore the worst.

    So far, more than 1/3 of the population (according to surveys) are still behind the second approach for the coronavirus. (Republicans as a group seem to make up most of this group.) Not coincidentally, as a country we have lost our role as leader of the free world. We are now an exemplar of national clownish incompetence and even as visitors we are now unwelcome.

    1. If you bothered to read, you would know why that will not work as a solution to decarbonising the electricity supply. I have linked to – and quoted from – the relevant industry body analysis (WNA) at least three times now. Ignoring the facts and repeating bullshit does not advance the conversation.

    2. Are you objecting to 100% nuclear, or also nuclear as part of the solution, around 20-40%?
      I assumed you were more in agreement with Clack, but perhaps that was only because of poor quality work from Jacobson.

    3. Are you objecting to 100% nuclear, or also nuclear as part of the solution, around 20-40%?

      I’m objecting to RickA’s imperviousness to correction. As I have posted – several times – not even the World Nuclear Association thinks more that 25% of global electricity generation could be achieved with nuclear by 2050. And that is with a number of favourable assumptions. Ricky’s interminable harping on a non-solution to decarbonising the energy supply is basically trolling. He knows it’s very far from a silver bullet, but he still keeps pretending that bad hippies are going to wreck the planet because they are obstructing the creation of a carbon-free nuclear paradise. Like most of Ricky’s notions, it’s bullshit and he’s had it pointed out, repeatedly.

      The Harmony goal is for the nuclear industry to provide 25% of global electricity and build 1000 GWe of new nuclear capacity by 2050. The World Nuclear Association says this requires an economic and technological level playing field, harmonised regulatory processes to streamline nuclear construction, and an effective safety paradigm which focuses safety efforts on measures that make the most difference to public wellbeing. The build schedule would involve adding 10 GWe per year to 2020, 25 GWe per year to 2025, and 33 GWe per year from then. This rate compares with 31 GWe per year in the mid-1980s. The Harmony goal is put forward at a time when the limitations, costs and unreliability of other low-carbon sources of electricity are becoming politically high-profile in several countries.

      Source: WNA

    4. Yes, there is a time lag, though I wasn’t aware of one for hospitalizations.
      My point is that time lag has happened already, all the way to 40,000 cases per day.

    5. Yes, there is a time lag, though I wasn’t aware of one for hospitalizations.
      My point is that time lag has happened already, all the way to 40,000 cases per day.

      You don’t have a point. You never did.

      I gather seven states reported record coronavirus hospitalisation figures yesterday. You cannot bullshit your way out of this one Mike.

    6. Yes, a number of states have their cases high now rather than before, so they are getting record hospitalizations, as is the US as a whole, or at least will be soon.
      However, the case counts are way beyond record levels. It took many more cases to get the record hospitalizations.
      About a net 2% hospitalizations.
      The first million cases had 55,000 in the hospital and 50k dead on Apr 27.
      The second million had another 55k dead and 31k in the hospital on Jun 10.
      Sine June 10, 1.9 million cases, additional 28,500 hospitalized, and 27k dead.
      Hospitalized rate is dropping from 10.5% to 3%, with the most recent 2.9% even better because it is over a shorter period of time.
      The most recent million cases was over two weeks, yet just 20,000 additional hospitalized, with 12,000 dead.
      Yes there is an increase in cases, that I expect will continue.
      The stress on hospitals is lower per case. People are getting cleared out faster because they are milder cases.

  127. We are not preparing for the worst. We didn’t with Covid-19 and we certainly won’t for the far more significant threat posed by climate change. The neoliberal capitalist system obliterates the precautionary principle, and governments are either held hostage to it or, as in the United States, are bought and sold by it. Short-term profits take precedence over everything including human life and the environment. The system is like a snake eating itself beginning at the tail. As a species we don’t stand a chance of surviving much longer than a century or two longer unless we can find a way to wrest power from those who do not care about what kind of world there will be a few generations from now. These people, in truth around 200 predominantly white, obscenely wealthy, males, are only concerned about maintaining the status quo and increasing their wealth in the short term. They loathe democracy and do whatever is necessary to manipulate the levers of power. If there is a ‘cancel culture’, it is this small number of people who are the dominant players, canceling all and any opposition to their power and privilege.

    1. China and India would have to substantially reduce emissions to ‘prepare for the worst’.
      How many of these 200 people are controlling decisions there, and how many current proposals to deal with global warming even tackle that issue?
      Everything is about limiting in Europe, US, and some other countries, which together account for about the same as China and India combined, and the remaining countries have emissions about equal to this total as well.

  128. BBD says “I’m objecting to RickA’s imperviousness to correction.”

    The USA provides 20% of our electricity with nuclear with 100 plants. If we were serious about global warming – of course we could build 100 new plants in 5 years, and we could do that every 5 years, until we produced 80% of our electricity with nuclear (and the remainder with renewable, as we do already). If we were really serious about global warming, of course we could do that. Problem solved – at least by the USA. The other countries would have to make their own decisions – I only recommend what the USA should do (as I live here).

    Just pick one standardized design and do it – easy peasy.

    BBD – tell me – do you seriously believe it would be physically impossible for the USA to build 100 new plants in 5 years? Of course the USA could double its nuclear in 5 years (if it wanted to). Why the USA military has 160 naval reactors (and those are just the ones we know about).

    The fact that we won’t do that tells me everything I need to know about whether the USA is preparing for the worst. We are not.

    It is the mostly renewable solution which is pure fantasy – not nuclear. At least nuclear is not physically impossible – while 100% renewable is physically impossible. Hello, it gets dark every night! Oops – sometimes it isn’t windy. Oh oh – sometimes it is dark and dead calm at the same time. To bad no one has invented grid level batteries yet, so the entire USA grid could run off battery power for a week or two. Oh well.

    What a shame there isn’t a non-carbon emitting technology which we already know how to build, which already powers 20% of our electricity, and which doesn’t take up very much space or require the transportation of vast amounts of carbon. Well – until the “people” wake up and enough push for nuclear it is just a pipe dream. Just like 100% renewable.

    Until then I will keep recommending the only solution which is already in hand and which will stop the emissions of CO2 in producing electricity. WNA reports or not.

    1. Sigh. Once again I have to remind you that the US is not the world. If you bothered to read the WNA stuff I have posted over and again for you, you might notice that it is a global analysis. CO2 emissions are a global problem and as such can only be effectively addressed by global policies. Do at least attempt to understand the basic stuff.

      Not even the nuclear industry’s own trade body can come up with a more optimistic estimate that 25% of global electricity from nuclear by 2050 which effectively rules out nuclear as a silver bullet. I’m not going to repeat this politely again so don’t tone troll me if you repeat your bullshit ever again and get dealt with accordingly.

      BBD – tell me – do you seriously believe it would be physically impossible for the USA to build 100 new plants in 5 years?

      Yes, I do. It can’t even build one in five years. And there is zero appetite for funding large nuclear plant buildout in the US.

      You are trolling with this nuclear crap. You do it because you know it can be divisive but I’m not anti-nuclear in the least. I am very much anti your endless bullshitting and trolling on this topic though.

    2. It can’t be done because people don’t support funding it can be applied to lots of things, like high voltage transmission lines. It is not an argument that it can’t be done.

      Note the WNA 25% in 2050, would mean approximately a third of current consumption, and that is new supply to be added to the existing fleet.
      However, my calculations could be off since I’m confused as to the meaning of GWe.

    3. It is just a matter of priorities. What is more important: 1) climate change or 2) opposition to nuclear power.

      If climate change is as bad a problem as some say it is, opposition to nuclear power will melt away and soon all the greenies will be for it. If ECS turns out to be below 2.0 C (not that we will ever know, since it cannot be measured), well then the world can afford not to go nuclear and nuclear opposition will be a luxury which will continue.

    4. It can’t be done because people don’t support funding it can be applied to lots of things, like high voltage transmission lines. It is not an argument that it can’t be done.

      First, this is nonsense. If there’s no funding, there’s no project. Doesn’t matter what it is – it does not get built. Second, the problems with nuclear run much deeper than that. The US literally cannot build a single plant in five years. As for HVDC, the really sticky issue is usually the creation of a land corridor for the lines to run through. That is both costly (lawyers literally every inch of the way) and hugely time-consuming. This is a big problem for a high-renewables scenario in the US (and elsewhere) as this requires HVDC to connect optimum wind and solar production regions to distant high-demand centres (eg. coastal cities).

      Note the WNA 25% in 2050, would mean approximately a third of current consumption, and that is new supply to be added to the existing fleet.
      However, my calculations could be off since I’m confused as to the meaning of GWe.

      This is confusing. Global electricity demand is projected to rise significantly by 2050 (electrification, urbanisation, developing economies) so the job of decarbonisation actually gets harder as time goes by. You need more capacity, of whatever type, to keep up with rising demand.

  129. Bernard, if 15-20% result in hospital admission, they are not staying very long.
    Since July 1, there have been 1.1 million cases, and current hospitalization is up by 22,000, a 2% rate.

  130. Vaccine ‘unlikely to have durable effect’

    Prof Sir John Bell, of the University of Oxford, said he thought it was unlikely that Covid-19 would ever be eliminated despite the positive news announced on Monday that trials by his university had triggered an immune response – an important step in developing a vaccine.

    “The reality is that this pathogen is here forever, it isn’t going anywhere,” he told MPs.

    “Look at how much trouble they’ve had in eliminating, for example, polio, that eradication programme has been going on for 15 years and they’re still not there.

    “So this is going to come and go, and we’re going to get winters where we get a lot of this virus back in action.

    “The vaccine is unlikely to have a durable effect that’ll last for a very long time, so we’re going to have to have a continual cycle of vaccinations, and then more disease, and more vaccinations and more disease.

    “So I think the idea that we’re going to eliminate it across the population, that’s just not realistic.”

    Source: BBC

    1. Which is why we will get to herd immunity, and the current strain will go away, perhaps mutate and then come back (maybe even seasonally, or not – no one knows).

      It is a race between getting a vaccine deployed worldwide and developing herd immunity. Perhaps, say next March or so, we will raise our heads and wonder why the new cases have dropped off so much. It will dwindle and go away. Then we will forget about it until it happens again.

      That is what happens over and over again.

    2. In many cases of pathogen-host ecology “herd-immunity” is only acquired after the pathogen kills a significant proportion of the population, and by so doing forces an evolution to lower pathogen virulence and stronger host immunity.

      You’re advocating a nihilistic condemnation of millions of people to deaths that needn’t have occurred if better management had been applied. Which I guess is fine if you’re suggesting that the planet needs to have the human herd thinned out…

      Is that your platform?

      And SARS-CoV-2 isn’t going to “go away” for years, if ever. Not unless there’s a cheap, effective, and long-lasting vaccine.

    3. Which is why we will get to herd immunity,

      Why are you so tone deaf to the actual argument?

      A novel virus like CV puts too many people in hospital too rapidly so the infection rate must be managed by sometimes aggressive public health policy.

      Yet rightwing freedum lovin numpties everywhere have fought tooth and nail to prevent this from happening.

      Don’t slyly start distancing yourself from the fact that you are one of them.

  131. What is the false positive rate and false negative rate for COVID tests?
    Is this something to be concerned about?

    1. In theory the false positive rate is zero. There can’t be a positive when there is no Covid19. Having said that, there are tests that were simply broken, that gave false positives. That is not a proper test giving an expected occasional false positive. This is extraordinarily rare.

      The false negative is thought to happen almost 100% of the time on day one of an infection and something like 50% of the time about a week, or a little less, in, then it drops rapidly. There is always going to be a troubling false negative rate. That isn’t a flaw in the test, or a special property of the virus.

      It is like counting deer on your woodlot. IF there are none there you can’t count more than 0 of them. It would be extraordinary to do so. But if there are just a few you can miss them.

    2. Wait a minute, if false negatives are very likely in the first part of infection, is the NBA and others wasting its time with daily testing?

    3. As Greg said, false positives in this sort of context are rare. The more so because cases that are positive are (or at least, should be – I can’t speak for all US commercial labs) re-tested by the same testing method, and confirmed by a different testing method. They’re also diagnosed with reference to the signs and symptoms.

      It’s really difficult to get a false positive through the system*. Especially so because the diagnosticians who know their systems very quickly understand how to identify false positive test results from real positives (I could always pick pregnant women from true positive HIV tests with no clinical notes to assist) and request additional testing to confirm.

      If (when) there false positives they’re more likely to be a fault of process or of policy*, rather than of technicality.

      As one of my irreverent colleagues is prone to say, “science works, bitches. Get used to it.”

      Some false negative may occur where patients are infected but were unable to mount an effective antibody response, and the screening test was a serological one. These are rare. More likely would be if serological tests were conducted too early in the infection cycle, before the reactive immunoglobulins were produced. It’s one reason why testing should be repeated in high-risk situations… But again, this is a process problem, not a technical one.

      There will, however be many false negatives in the sense that the US isn’t testing enough people to catch all the asymptomatic cases. It’s again a process/policy problem. This under-reporting however can and will be inferred from retrospective sampling studies, as has already started to occur, and they’re one of the reasons why we’re now getting the hint that COVID-19 deaths are about 30% higher than reported.

      [* In Australia, at least…

      ** Probably the main source of false positives is cross-contamination, which is a process problem, and as I said there should be methodology in place to check in these instances – if not, that’s a problem of policy…]

    4. Moderation caught me, so I missed this:

      Wait a minute, if false negatives are very likely in the first part of infection, is the NBA and others wasting its time with daily testing?

      Serological testing is not really possible in the first week for IgM tests and for several weeks for IgG tests. However microbiological and genetic testing works very early in infection, so there is no need for “wasting time…”

    5. Greg, have you seen the story about NBA player Juan Soto? He claim’s he’s tested negative six times (3 times from tests performed by the NBA, 3 times by MLB, why that is so I don’t know), but hasn’t had two consecutive negative tests (so he isn’t allowed to play).

      I find that quite odd. I’ve seen some rumors that the NBA has been playing fast and loose with testing in order to make their numbers look good, but this single story isn’t enough to support those rumors (at least for me). It does illustrate that pro athletes are given better access to testing than the general public.

    6. Sorry, Soto is an MLB player — I got my abbreviations mixed up. He had three negative tests from the team and three from the league.

    7. Not sure where you saw that, but he is a player for the Washington Nationals, so it is the NBA testing that would is unexplained.

  132. RickA, herd immunity is out the window. Why do you keep going on and on about it? The more we understand about the novel virus, the more we realize how dangerous it is, how adaptive it is, and that immunity, if at all, is very transient. It won’t nearly be over by next March in the US as you claim. Trump and Pence look like the idiots they are after repeatedly making false predictions (by the way, your bet on their November victory is looking very frail right now). The key is to try and suppress it and for a vaccine to be developed that is renewed annually. Exposing the population to Covid-19 deliberately is insanity and will not work. You were wrong when you first proposed herd immunity several months ago and you are still wrong now.

    1. It’s probably still too early in the unfolding of SARS-C0V-2 to issue blanket descriptions of the trajectory of immunity to this coronavirus, but there will be a range of response types.

      1) Some people will retain extended strong immunity, lasting years, which will make any subsequent reinfection very minor or asymptomatic. (It’s a myth to say that immunity stops subsequent infection – it is actually a matter of infections being dealt with so quickly by an ‘educated’ and primed immune system that the responsive pool of specifically-reactive immune cells (B and T lymphocytes) deal with the infection before it becomes a problem.)

      2) Some people will retain limited immunity beyond a period of weeks to months, which will make any reinfection less severe than the first time, ranging from mild to potentially problematic.

      3) Some people will lose most of their initial immunity, resulting in a reinfection being potentially serious.

      There may be permutations of the above but the general idea is simple to grok.

      Most infectious agents would include a balance in one form or other of these response types. Current limited evidence suggests that SARS-CoV-2 tends less toward #1 than other types of infections.

    2. Jeffh:

      We may reach herd immunity despite your wishes. So the process is happening right now, and seems to be proceeding despite your complaints.

      It is a race to see which comes first: herd immunity or deploying an effective vaccine. It would be great if a vaccine is available before we reach herd immunity, but I have my doubts.

  133. The topic of most comments here is interesting but moot I think based on recent events and statements. The Impeached President has shown beyond any rational doubt that he has no plan nor any interest in a plan — not even herd immunity — to control the coronavirus pandemic in the U. S. and save the health and lives of its people. If he or his enablers had a plan, they would have implemented it by now. As his niece and dozens of mental health professionals have stated, on an emotional level he is indifferent to what happens to the people in the country in any way that focuses on them rather than himself. Until and unless he is replaced as President by a rational and caring human being we can expect no effective action regarding the virus from the Federal government.

    It seems clear to me that the I. P. has already begun what he was likely saving for his second term, the creation of a militarized secret police to complete the fascist revolution he and his Republican enablers (most notably A.G. Barr) have been so busily working to achieve. The continuing mostly but not completely peaceful protests have afforded him the excuse to intervene in a typical fascist way and the recent actions of his anonymous “agents” seen in Portland OR have shown that there will be no protection for people from First Amendment or Fourth Amendment rights. The kidnappings of and physical attacks on people doing nothing in the least criminal and captured on video have shown the disregard for the Constitution by those “agents” beyond doubt.

    Despite strong criticism of the Portland action, the I. P. has already threatened to send similar units to other U. S. cities — notably those with Democratic administrations — and Homeland Security Acting Secretary Chad Wolf has stated to Fox News that “I don’t need invitations by the state, state mayors or state governors to do our job. We’re going to do that, whether they like us there or not.”

    1. I remember similar conspiracy theories being told during the presidency of Barack Obama. And George W Bush. And Bill Clinton.
      The only thing you are missing is FEMA camps.

    2. Tyvor

      As Expected MikeN has diminished your assessment of what is happening in the US (and worryingly elsewhere) referring to conspiracy theories.

      MikeN this is no theory, there is clearly a conspiracy to create precedent for extending the Trump nepotism for further terms.

      With so much doom to scroll through, it’s hard to know when to stop and pay attention, but one story that jumped out at me – and, I hope, at many others – is the account of how demonstrators in Portland, Oregon, protesting racism and police brutality earlier in July, were tear-gassed, beaten, seized off the street by unidentified, masked federal agents in camouflage and fatigues, hustled into unmarked vans and detained for hours. The agents were reported to work with the US Marshals Special Operations Group and Bortac, the Border Patrol Tactical Unit.

      Source

    3. Can’t criticize you that much, since Nancy Pelosi and others are saying similar nutty ravings:

      “These soldiers are disregarding and overriding the elementary rights of American citizens by applying tactics which must have been copied from the manual issued the officers of Hitler’s storm troopers.”

      “The president is substituting military dictatorship for the Constitution of the United States.”
      Maxine Waters

      “My fellow citizens, we are now an occupied territory.”
      Ted Wheeler, mayor of Portland

  134. Greg:

    The moderation is hard to figure out. Some comments are moderated and some are not. Are there key words I should avoid? Inquiring minds want to know how you are moderating (if you wish to disclose of course).

    1. There are keywords but if I told you the targets of the moderation would then know and then it would no longer matter. One of them I’ll tell you because it is a bot that uses it: herpes. Don’t mention herpes.

    2. “These soldiers are disregarding and overriding the elementary rights of American citizens by applying tactics which must have been copied from the manual issued the officers of Hitler’s storm troopers.”

      “The president is substituting military dictatorship for the Constitution of the United States.”
      Maxine Waters

      “My fellow citizens, we are now an occupied territory.”
      Ted Wheeler, mayor of Portland

      All of that is true mikeN. When I ask myself why you deny it I go back to your long running defense of the nazi in Charlottesville who decided to run is car into a crowd to injure and potentially kill people and your defense of the scum who stalked and murdered Trayvon Martin simply because he didn’t think the young man should be in the neighborhood. You approve of right-wing abuse.

  135. MikeN

    Neither is it a theory that Trump wishes to turn the US into his own fiefdom for however long.

    Trump consults Bush torture lawyer on how to skirt law and rule by decree

    Constitutional scholars and human rights activists have also pointed to the deployment of paramilitary federal forces against protesters in Portland as a sign that Trump is ready to use this broad interpretation of presidential powers as a means to suppress basic constitutional rights.

    “This is how it begins,” Laurence Tribe, a Harvard constitutional law professor, wrote on Twitter. “The dictatorial hunger for power is insatiable. If ever there was a time for peaceful civil disobedience, that time is upon us.”

    Source

    Ordered you Brown Shirt yet MikeN?

    1. Supreme Court ruled that Trump couldn’t undo an Obama executive order that goes beyond what was passed by Congress. Mr. Yoo is just extending the logic and saying therefore Trump should be able to do the same with his executive orders and expect the same level of Supreme Court deference.
      The problem lies with the Supreme Court in allowing such executive orders(really just a DHS memo) to begin with.

  136. Had a post supporting Tyvor against MikeN’s conspiracy theory dismissal held up in moderation.

    So continued with a second which appeared.

    Posted again to note that the first of the two posts were held in moderation but then the second vanished too.

  137. RickA, yopu can’t have herd immunity if the virus evolves and mutates fast enough to re-infect people again only months after the initial infection. Bernard explained it and recent UK/German studies are strongly suggesting it. With Covid-19, a significant number of people may be re-infected only 3 months or so after the first infection. If this happens, to achieve herd immunity 60-70% of the population need to become infected virtually at the same time.

    Impossible.

    Once again, herd immunity is almost certainly out. You are wrong again. Little new there…

    1. CDC reporting today that after 6 months they have seen no cases of reinfection. Not sure if this is US or global.

    2. MikeN, there have been several US cases at least of reoccurrence of COVID-19 that have been described by physicians, and I saw one purported patient interviewed on MSNBC. When I first heard about reinfection I was sceptical, but it’s not impossible.

      The peak and then the drop-off of immunoglobulin titres isn’t necessarily an indication of short-term immunity, as this is a typical feature of the immune response: learn to deal with the pathogen, fight it, and then cease maximum production of a glycoprotein that’s no longer needed – but maintain a pool of memory T cells that are ready to response when reinfection occurs. (If a body retained peak level of antibodies and lymphocytes from every immune response that it ever generated it’s waste a lot of energy, and blood would turn to a thick soup.)

      And as I indicated above reinfection does occur, often – it’s just that the second and subsequent infections are nearly always dealt with so rapidly, because there’s a pool of sensitive memory T cells ready, that no signs or symptoms are perceivable. The problem occurs if that pool of memory T cells is not always as functional as it should be, or if the virus mutates sufficiently that its new epitopes are unrecognisable by that pool.

      Current genetic analyses don’t seem to indicate that the virus mutates extremely rapidly, but more work probably needs to be done. And it’s too early to determine the rate of attenuation of the size and functionality of the generated pool of memory cells, and it’s certainly too early to determine whether a vaccine response will differ from an infection response.

      There are many ducks to line up in a row before we can glibly speak of herd immunity, and these ducks are currently swimming all around the pond. In the case of a new infectious agent that’s deadly, and that comes from a group of pathogens that are notorious for their capacity to evade immune suppression, the wise hold off making bold assertions of success until the evidence is in.

      Finally, it’s ironic that despite having little evidence you’re so enthusiastic about the imminent conquering of SARS-CoV-2, when you simultaneously persist in saying that the decades of mountainous scientific indications of – and now the years of empirical proof for – human-caused climate change can’t be trusted and we need to wait and see for a few more decades…

      It seems that your reliance on science is very much predicated on the message that you’re trying to sell.

  138. Re: MikeN “I remember similar conspiracy theories being told during the presidency of Barack Obama. And George W Bush. And Bill Clinton.”
    =
    If you are referring to my comment on Trump’s “secret police”, don’t be ridiculous. There is nothing theoretical about the facts I provided and my conclusions are logical and clearly identified. Furthermore, the conspiracy of Trump, his stooges, and the “see-no-evil, hear-no-evil” Republicans is right out in the open.

    In this case:
    1) There were unidentified and unidentifiable military-garbed “agents” in Portland and the Trump Administration has not denied this. Quite the contrary.
    2)These “agents” were captured on video kidnapping and assaulting people who were not engaged in any illegal activity nor provoking them by any threatening actions.
    3) These “agents” are seen/heard to be unresponsive to attempts to get them to identify themselves or explain their actions.
    4) The Impeached President has threatened to send more “agents” to cities whose chief executives are members of his opposition political party. {Funny how Putin gets a pass on offering a bounty on U. S. and other troops in Afghanistan but protestors or even bystanders to protests require violent attacks.)

    If none of this seems fascist to you, you don’t understand what fascism is nor how it works. What I’ve described does worry many people who recognize real tyrannical actions when they see them, including scholars who are more familiar with the U. S. Constitution than you seem to be.

  139. I remember similar conspiracy theories being told during the presidency of Barack Obama. And George W Bush. And Bill Clinton.
    The only thing you are missing is FEMA camps.

    Except that for obama they were the wild conspiracies of people like you and rickA, motivated completely because Obama wasn’t white. The attacks against Clinton were on the same fictional level as the “Clintons have killed people who opposed them” and “HRC was responsible for Benghazi” — again, pure bullcrap aimed at people like you.

    The most asinine conspiracy I remember about Bush was the stupidity floated that he might fight leaving office, but I admit I could have missed others (and probably did). The complaints about his administration conducting illegal kidnappings around the world and re-introducing torture to the set of American tools were not fake — again, we know those things happened.

    But now we can see the agents taking people off the street in different towns, whether they were “violating the law” or protesting peacefully as the Constitution allows. We can also see the goons don’t have any identification. The claim that they are DHS agents seems to weakened by today’s revelations that many are contractors.

    This was a weak bit of bullshit even for you.

  140. Greg:

    I may have a post or two in moderation (I cannot recall if it is one or two). One of them is a question about moderation itself. Thanks for checking.

  141. Very important sensitivity study effectively rules out EffCS low enough for us to avoid severe climate impacts without deep decarbonisation:

    Sherwood et al. 2020 An assessment of Earth’s climate sensitivity using multiple lines of evidence

    https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1029/2019RG000678

    Meanwhile, ideologically-motivated denialism takes another punch on the nose as CV hospitalisations begin to overwhelm Florida healthcare system, exactly as expected:

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/jul/24/florida-hospitals-coronavirus-outbreak-ron-desantis

    Cue more bullshit from the usual suspects.

    1. And still the vast majority of Americans haven’t been infected yet.

      Same goes for over here, where we are repeating the stupidly premature end to lockdown at the behest of braying hard right Tory muppets who are so imbecilic they cannot understand that the total net cost of too soon is much, much higher than waiting just a few more weeks. They were happy enough delaying for weeks BEFORE finally, belatedly imposing a lockdown but this is somehow different.

      TBH I despair.

    2. About 7-8 years ago I did a BoE estimation* of ECS using a primitive Baysian approach to the ranges cited in the literature at the time. My estimate was 3.4 ± 0.2 K. I remember at the time hoping that I’d be wrong, and knowing in the back of my mind that I probably wasn’t.

      Sherwood et al have popped my balloon. 🙁

      [* It was in response to a Tamino (or was it a Brere Rabbet?) comment. I can’t find the original post even though I’ve been searching for it for 3.5 years. If anyone has a link to the original I’d be much obliged.]

  142. Re: MikeN “. . . Nancy Pelosi and others are saying similar nutty ravings:

    “These soldiers are disregarding and overriding the elementary rights of American citizens by applying tactics which must have been copied from the manual issued the officers of Hitler’s storm troopers.”
    =
    Anyone who watches the news (rather than Faux News exclusively) should have noticed that any “nutty ravings” or lies about this situation are coming from the Impeached President and his Republican sycophants and enablers.

    Amendments 1 (right of peaceful assembly and petition) and 4 (right to be secure in their persons and freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures without probable cause) of the U. S. Constitution have been violated when people engaged in no illegal activity and making no threatening motions are violently attacked.

    Is it a vision problem or a reading comprehension problem re the Constitution that makes you think that complaining about such actions in Portland and Washington D. C. are “nutty ravings”? (If it’s the second problem that is your case, you share it with the I. P. who once referred angrily to a part of the Constitution he was supposed to read on camera as “just words” because he was unable to make any sense of them.)

    Hey, it’s Friday night and I wonder which Inspector General or other civil servant is due to be fired tonight for actually trying to serve the American people. Maybe the one starting an investigation of the I. P.’s attempt at forming and using a personal army against the public.