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  1. #21
    Senior Member ethernautrix's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Thanks, DAVE (dneal) [hahaha!], for the links and the excerpt. I read the excerpt and started reading the cartels article. But here, my friend has replied:

    Greg Nagan: "That's fine... you can just refer them all to EuroMomo, where they can see the stats for themselves.
    "But be sure to mention I'm a moron. Not a doctor, not a virologist or epidemiologist, nothing of the sort. Just an idiot that has been working with data for thirty plus years."

    Screenshot_20200420-Greg_Nagan.jpg


    This all goes to the question of whether re-opening the economy actually will save more lives than the alternative.


    ETA: The screenshot cut off the graphs. I suppose I should screenshot those, too. Jeez, I'm so lazy.
    Last edited by ethernautrix; April 20th, 2020 at 01:11 PM.
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  3. #22
    Senior Member ethernautrix's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    The graphs. I'm not sure what language the month is. April po polsku is Kwiecień, and in this form, Kwietnia. Anyway, wanted to clarify that this post is from 14 April 2020.

    Screenshot_20200420-Greg_Nagan-graphs.jpg
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    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    "Sweden continue[s] flat"

    Interestingly, Sweden never implemented any "lockdown" measures.

    Oh, and

    F28C188A-829E-4E0B-843A-857B36AAABFA.jpeg

    Last edited by dneal; April 20th, 2020 at 06:51 PM.

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    Useless mhosea's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Massachusetts has just stepped up its reporting game. The latest update has many graphs, and some of it gives information I have wanted to know, like, what is the hospitalization rate (for tested individuals) by age group.

    https://www.mass.gov/doc/covid-19-da...-2020/download
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  9. #25
    Senior Member ethernautrix's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    @Dave -- Hahaha! Can't fool me! I know you're in there!

    Back on topic: I realize that I have a kindv of advantage being an American in Poland during these highly-charged political times. Even if the antenna worked for the TV set, the news would be in Polish. Wystarczająco powiedziane.

    I've been "watching" a few YouTube channels on and off (sometimes while multitasking on rote tasks, i.e., not paying full attention), including Dr. John Campbell (it's like Blade Runner or some other Sci-Fi dystopian movie with the talking head with the calm voice on a TV set in the background, weirdly soothing and frightening at once.) and Dr. Pamela Popper (via YouTube's algorithm ).

    It was from Dr. Campbell that I learned about vitamin D's role in C19 and how black and brown Americans were at higher risk because of vitamin D deficiency. I paid attention, because my recent blood test showed a super low vitamin D level (probably not surprising during winter, but I was in California. Where I find the sunshine too harsh and so avoid it and wear sunscreen.). My doctor prescribed -- wrote out a prescription -- for vitamin D for me, and so I've been taking at least 2000iu per day, upped to 4000iu after the Dr. Campbell video.

    A couple of days after that, I started to see on FB outrage from some friends about the higher risk of C19 infection amongst black Americans, because racism. No mention of vitamin D deficiency.

    I'm not saying that racism isn't a problem in American society, but to hang the higher danger of C19 to black and brown Americans on racism and not vitamin D levels -- I'm sorry to admit that a part of my brain just shut down.

    ...

    So here is this video from Dr. Pamela Popper, apparently an expert on nutrition and health:




    I'm saying all this, because -- as I just admitted -- part of my brain shuts down in the face of what I perceive as nonsense or missing the point, and I'm wondering how much of that dynamic is playing out when people can't even question if what countries are doing is the best course. FTR: I like Dr. Popper's presentation, because she urges her audience to seek out the information from the sources for themselves.

    Just last night, I saw something -- it's probably everywhere in the USA, so -- "the cure is worse than the disease." And about half the population went or is (?) apoplectic: "You want to sacrifice the elders for money!" (Oh wait. I saw a bit of there here, at fpg.) NO! No one wants to sacrifice anyone! But we have a PROBLEM. And people are going to die whether we shut down or not. The question, to my way of thinking, is... can we mitigate the spread of C19 without destroying the economy, and when I say "economy," read "society."--?

    I thought about my family and closest friends. It's an insignificant sample size, but we all have at least one vulnerable beloved person, so we're all vested in measures of protection.

    Are we overlooking ways of protecting our vulnerable loved ones? Without destroying society?

    Which is why methodology matters when assessing the threat of C19.

    But I'm not an expert. Which is why I depend on the experts not to lie (out of embarrassment or ego or political advantage or pathology or whatever). People have to learn to admit when they're wrong so we can get on with the business of solving problems. (Which implies obviously that I believe the experts have been lying to the public. But I don't know. I at least want to ask the question without being attacked for just asking.) (Not that I've been attacked. I'm alluding to all the yelling in here recently -- which, thankfully, has calmed down a bit -- and out there.)

    I want to repeat this, just in case someone comes along with a hammer, looking for a problem: I don't know. I don't know whom to believe. I don't know who's telling the truth. I don't know the answer(s). That's why I'm asking questions.
    Last edited by ethernautrix; April 21st, 2020 at 05:39 AM.
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  11. #26
    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Quote Originally Posted by mhosea View Post
    Massachusetts has just stepped up its reporting game. The latest update has many graphs, and some of it gives information I have wanted to know, like, what is the hospitalization rate (for tested individuals) by age group.

    https://www.mass.gov/doc/covid-19-da...-2020/download
    If it was in the document, I missed it; but do you know what the “testing” consisted of? Current infections and/or antibodies present? You know, that whole denominator thing...

  12. #27
    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Here’s a Swedish epidemiologist who worked at the WHO (well that’s awkward)



    UK policy on lockdown and other European countries are not evidence-based

    The correct policy is to protect the old and the frail only

    This will eventually lead to herd immunity as a “by-product”

    The initial UK response, before the “180 degree U-turn”, was better

    The Imperial College paper was “not very good” and he has never seen an unpublished paper have so much policy impact

    The paper was very much too pessimistic

    Any such models are a dubious basis for public policy anyway

    The flattening of the curve is due to the most vulnerable dying first as much as the lockdown

    The results will eventually be similar for all countries

    Covid-19 is a “mild disease” and similar to the flu, and it was the novelty of the disease that scared people.

    The actual fatality rate of Covid-19 is the region of 0.1%

    At least 50% of the population of both the UK and Sweden will be shown to have already had the disease when mass antibody testing becomes available

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    Useless mhosea's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    I believe the testing referred to is only the kind to confirm an existing infection. So, there is no information there on the denominator. Nevertheless, I thought the charts on confirmed cases, hospitalizations, and deaths by age group were striking when taken together. The press has, of course, admitted that the elderly are more at risk, but the risk is more skewed to the right than I had imagined. I think it has been obfuscated by the press highlighting tragic cases of younger victims. While the risk is real, there is no life without risk, and we manage, and implicitly accept, risks in order to live fulfilling lives. No question that we should be asking how to protect the older population, but that just means we need to do something extraordinary, not necessarily the particular extraordinary thing we’re doing.
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    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Apparently the media is abuzz with a California study that suggests the prevalence is 50 to 80 times what we’re actually seeing, and the mortality rate is on par or less than the flu. I’ll see if I can find it this evening. Too nice outside not to be enjoying it (although I’m taking a break from shoveling gravel right now).

    —edit—

    So it’s 28 to 55 times higher (not 50 to 80 as mentioned above and reported earlier). I haven’t found the actual preliminary results that have been released, and the study still needs peer reviewed, but here are two decent articles summarizing the study. First is from The Hill and the second is from USC.

    article from The Hill

    USC news release
    Last edited by dneal; April 21st, 2020 at 09:13 PM.

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    Junior Member sospiro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Quote Originally Posted by ethernautrix View Post

    I want to repeat this, just in case someone comes along with a hammer, looking for a problem: I don't know. I don't know whom to believe. I don't know who's telling the truth. I don't know the answer(s). That's why I'm asking questions.

    This article refers to figures published by The Office for National Statistics (UK)

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-52361519

    The main points:

    — Deaths in England and Wales have nearly doubled above what would be expected, hitting a 20-year high.

    — In the week up to 10 April, there were 18,500 deaths, about 8,000 more than is normal at this time of year.

    — 6,200 of these deaths were linked to coronavirus / Covid-19


    @ ethernautrix — not with a hammer but a whimper (with apologies to TS Eliot)

    Stay safe and well everyone

  17. #31
    Senior Member ethernautrix's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Real quick (posting before reading, cos sometimes I have to act quickly, before the interruptions!):

    Here is Dr. Campbell with some statistics. Which reminded me that I watched another doctor's YouTube channel, a retired bariatric surgeon-cum-personal coach (hehe! I don't know why that tickles me.), Dr. Duc C. Vuong, who says that obesity is a risk factor (and is usually associated with the other conditions mentioned most, i.e., heart disease and diabetes).

    Here's Dr. Campbell's video:






    And, as I was waking up this morning, I was thinking about how I mentioned "destroying society," remembering my athropology 101 professor's saying (years ago, yeeeears), "Mutation is adaptation." I vaguely wondered about how C19 might be re-booting society, and maybe that isn't, in the long-term, automatically a negative (we just fear it, because we don't know what it is, and we're afraid it'll be the worst outcome (for me, that would be the total surveillance state and personal freedoms a dying memory)... and then, just this morning!, I came across this article:

    Ted Chiang Explains th Disaster Novel We All Suddenly Live In [electricliterature.com]

    Full disclosure: I'm not familiar with Ted Chiang, and I didn't read past his first answer [cos interruptions, from without and within, heh], which was:

    "On the panel, I said that traditional 'good vs. evil' stories follow a certain pattern: the world starts out as a good place, evil intrudes, good defeats evil, and the world goes back to being a good place. These stories are all about restoring the status quo, so they are implicitly conservative. Real science fiction stories follow a different pattern: the world starts out as a familiar place, a new discovery or invention disrupts everything, and the world is forever changed. These stories show the status quo being overturned, so they are implicitly progressive. (This observation is not original to me; it’s something that scholars of science fiction have long noted.) This was in the context of a discussion about the role of dystopias in science fiction. I said that while some dystopian stories suggest that doom is unavoidable, other ones are intended as cautionary tales, which implies we can do something to avoid the undesirable outcome."

    </drivebyposting>

    WIth many thanks to those of you contributing!
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  18. #32
    Member Dave's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Okay, contentious post stumbling over the horizon! Hold on to your hats.

    Dystopian stories are obviously based on the assumption that the new state is undesirable. It's in the name.

    Imagine if you will that SARS-Cov-2 wipes out half the global population. Is that a bad thing? For whom? For what other reasons? From what perspective? From the point of view of the planet - i.e. a Gaian perspective - this is probably a good thing. From the point of view of someone who is going to die, or has relatives/friends who are going to die, this is likely a bad thing. If it dumps us back into a parochial lifestyle, is this a bad thing? Is the life we (1st world people) live today really all that great? Are we truly realistic about what is important?

    Outcomes, values, perceptions. How are these to be measured in any kind of objective way? Maybe they can't, and we are left with measuring stuff in the imagined future against what we think we want now (or have been programmed to want).


    For the record, I don't necessarily think in these terms, but find them useful in attempting to understand why things happen (not very good at this bit to be honest).

  19. #33
    Senior Member ethernautrix's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Hey yo, we got a Dave in the house!

    Here's the thing: The world ends everyday... for somebody.

    People, especially the eldery, the sick, the sedentary obese alcoholic smokers -- and even young, healthy, beautiful people and babies -- die. I'm going to die. I'm going to die of something. I just keep hoping it won't be a fiery crash (with or without the fire) (probably prefer the crash scenario to the fire scenario, now that I'm thinking about it in words on the screen, unless the smoke inhalation cuts off oxygen to my brain, giving me a sense of euphoria, and then I die before my body starts burning). And, if it's not too much to ask, if I can't have euphoria, I'd like to request the instant, never-knew-what-hit-me, didn't-even-know-I-was-hit death.

    Cos I don't want to die of C19 (with its terrifying breathing difficulties) or ebola (blood leaking from unexpected parts) and so on.

    Am I being cavalier or ridiculous? I'm just hiding my fear of dying. The d y i n g part.

    And the truth is, to echo that Jim Morrison biography title: No one here gets out alive.

    Does this mean that I advocate rampant C19 spreading? No. But is C19 the deadly killer it's made out to be? (Again, I'm asking a question, not making pronouncements.)

    I wasn't paying attention to the news and was in California for most of February. Then flew to Poland via Frankfurt. Had no idea. I might have heard about yet another bird or swine flu out of China (reports weren't sure), but H1N1 and SARS didn't really affect other countries (and I had been nervous about those outbreaks).

    Besides the super long asymptomatic period, what sets this virus apart from the others? I mean, obviously, the threat to those with co-morbidities is frightening (the morbidities themselves are frightening (the cancers, the Alzheimer's, the heart disease..., diabetes, and so on)) without C19 coming in as a kind of closer. Know what I mean? Makes me think that Nature is shaking its head (I know it doesn't have a head, but don't jump off this train yet) and proving to humans that HEY! YOU HAVE TO DIE!

    And NO ONE likes that. DUH.

    And because no one wants to die, because death is scary, and losing our loved ones hurts so much... what are we collectively willing to do to prevent the inevitable? (IF... if... C19 isn't the Spanish Influenze, isn't the Black Death.)

    Well, France is pressuring Apple for its coronavirus-contact-tracing app without first implementing the privacy measures [BBC.com]

    And there's this -- in the USA (just saw this today!):
    Washington States OKs Facial Recognition Law Seen As National Model - The Wall Street Journal


    Do I have to be a criminal to object to having my movements monitored? Can't I be just a human being moseying along, minding my own business, not hurting anyone, who enjoys a (sense of) privacy and personal freedom (while it lasts)? Can I opt out of being sold to constantly? Who's running this software today? And who will be in charge tomorrow? What recourse do citizens have not to have their faces and gaits and movements and conversations all monitored (as is being done in China today, already a reality for millions of people)? Who are the monitors? What are their motivations? What are their ulterior motives? Are they checked for that?

    I don't care who the monitors are, because I don't trust any of them a priori.



    So. Um, yeah.

    ...


    Now for something completely different:

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  20. #34
    Senior Member ethernautrix's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    On the other hand... what if China-style surveillance were implemented all over the world, ostensibly to hinder the spread of infectious diseases? What if the USA started keeping "social scores" for its citizens? What if that is our future?

    Just blurting. I'm a blurter.







    @Dneal - Yo, D! I'm finally watching the video you posted above. (Laughing cos... oops! Slipped my mind.)


    About an hour later -- still watching the video (interruptions and distractions): In case I wasn't clear, I'm not advocating exposing our vulnerable to C19, to let the virus run its course. I want to protect them... while not destroying society (which rampant unemployment and impoverishment surely will, to some uncomfortable degree at least).
    Last edited by ethernautrix; April 22nd, 2020 at 05:19 PM.
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Quote Originally Posted by ethernautrix View Post
    Hey yo, we got a Dave in the house!
    Is this a local FPG joke or something? Like in the TV show?



    My other post was aimed at why people overlook the good in the bad. Removing half the population, for example, may be painful for those who lose friends/family/notable enemies, and it would impact on business/industry for a time. On the other hand, the world as a whole may well be an immeasurably better place to live for the half who remain. Personally I believe we're overpopulated by a factor of 5. We have no natural constraints, or at least hadn't thought so until now. SARS-Cov-2 and other as yet unknown pathogens could well be that constraint.

    In another vein, there are many people who cannot function appropriately in a society without constraints and controls imposed on them. Large tranches of community ills can be laid at the feet of these people. Perhaps forgoing some imagined freedoms on all would be a way of reducing these problems to a level where the quality of life for all would be better on average.

    Point is that today's world is no utopia, not even close. Maybe we are due a paradigm shifting change?

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    Useless mhosea's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Quote Originally Posted by ethernautrix View Post
    But is C19 the deadly killer it's made out to be?
    I think it depends on the age group you look at. As of 4/22, in Massachusetts:

    Average Age of COVID-19 Cases: 54
    Average Age of Cases Reported as Hospitalized (at any time): 68
    Average Age of Deaths in Confirmed COVID-19 Cases: 82

    Hospitalizations (at any time while confirmed case was active):
    0-19: 16 (1.6%)
    20-29: 97 (1.9%)
    30-39: 205 (3.4%)
    40-49: 313 (5.1%)
    50-59: 601 (8.1%)
    60-69: 797 (13.3%)
    70-79: 926 (21.5%)
    80+: 1300 (19.5%)

    Deaths totals and percentages of confirmed cases within age group (not percentage of all cases)
    0-19: 0
    20-29: 1 (0.02%)
    30-39: 7 (0.12%)
    40-49: 15 (0.24%)
    50-59: 75 (1%)
    60-69: 213 (3.6%)
    70-79: 483 (11.2%)
    80+: 1388 (20.8%)

    Most deaths had some preexisting condition.
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    Member Dave's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    How come the percentages don't add up? What (probably obvious) thing am I overlooking?

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    Useless mhosea's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave View Post
    How come the percentages don't add up? What (probably obvious) thing am I overlooking?
    The data is blocked into age ranges, and the percentage is of that age group only. Let's take 30-39 year-olds for example. 3.4% of 30-39 year-olds with confirmed cases needed to be hospitalized at some point. 0.12% of 30-39 year-olds with confirmed cases died.

    I didn't include the total number of confirmed cases, split into the age ranges, but here is that data:
    0-19: 1024
    20-29: 4979
    30-39: 6088
    40-49: 6175
    50-59: 7408
    60-69: 5957
    70-79: 4315
    80+: 6675

    So for 30-39 year-olds we have for hospitalizations: 205/6088 --> 3.4%, and for deaths, 7/6088 --> 0.12% (actually 0.11% correctly rounded to 2 significant digits, but I thought it best to round up).

    I should add that a portion of these cases are still active, so an unhospitalized confirmed case may eventually seek hospitalization and may eventually die, so for that reason, and also because the correct denominator for the population is unknown, these are not true hospitalization and mortality rates such as may be apparent at some future date, after the last case in this wave has been resolved and after random sampling produces an estimate of the actual number of cases.
    Last edited by mhosea; April 23rd, 2020 at 01:55 AM.
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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Thanks. That makes more sense. I missed that the rates were set against confirmed cases by groups.


    Using the extra data you provided (and I rounded down for the number of persons), and putting aside the unconfirmed cases for the moment, that means, for Massachusetts:

    1. The hospitalization rate is 9.98% of all confirmed cases.
    2. The death rate is 5.12% of all confirmed cases.



    Do you concur?*



    *my maths may be a little shonky.

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    Default Re: Post your Contentious Virus Posts Here

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave View Post
    Do you concur?*
    That's correct for the data shown. For completeness, to add up to the 42944 confirmed cases that they report at the top of the document, we need to factor in 323 additional confirmed cases that they apparently don't have age data for. Nevertheless, if we want the the overall figures, it would make sense to include them. Apparently none of these have died because the chart for deaths adds up to the reported total of 2182.
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