Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Are COVID-19 Death Numbers Being Pumped Up?

This is not the first such testimony I've come across.

Another Big, Good Revision To The IHME Predictions Again Today

Last I checked, still no mention of this at NYT or WaPo.

NYT Still Not Mentioning The Good Numbers; Skips Right To Working The Race Angle

It's whatever it is that we misuse 'ironic' to mean that the title of the race article is "The Pandemic's Missing Data."
You know what data is actually missing at the Times?
Yeah, you know.

But how's the media going to push this angle while still denying that race is biological? I mean...they're adept at the relevant juggling and spinning and sleight-of-hand. So I'm confident that with the right combination of half-assed gestures at poverty and "systemic racism" and whatnot they can cobble together something superficially plausible enough to fool people who want to be fooled. But missteps are possible. Truth does prefer to be free.
   With luck the Times can keep progressives and gullible centrists panicked for a couple more weeks. And use the opportunity to advance the doctrines of the High Church of Progressivism...most especially that of Original Racism. Of course the virus will still be around, and there'll likely be aftershocks (or whatever you call 'em). Those will be useful.
   Didja notice how the fact that 2/3 of those dying are male caused exactly zero consternation in the MSM? What it caused was an op-ed with the subtitle (roughly) "women are better at survival than men." Imagine that happening were the roles reversed... (Oh yeah, and the author of that piece repeatedly referred to himself as "an XY male," and to his gf as "an XX female." Because PC...)
   Some unsubstantiated speculation about race-specificity, and we get this story with a picture of a black guy looking sadly out the shade's closed...he's...looking sadly at the shade? What's the Times trying to say here? I have no idea. Anyway: proof that 2/3 of the victims are male: lol men suck. Unsubstantiated suggests that maybe it's affecting blacks more: WE DESPERATELY NEED TO RELEASE THE DATA!!!! Two weeks ago the media was ridiculing the suggestion that blacks were less susceptible and Asians moreso. I wondered about those possibilities myself, and I'd certainly like to see the evidence. But my God. Political correctness is the absence of reason.
   Somebody explain to me how it is that our intelligentsia thinks that the flagship of our mainstream media is praiseworthy. Anybody? Anybody?

   It goes without saying that I'm likely jumping the gun on proclaiming the end of the pandemic. I'm likely overreacting to the media's efforts to fan the flames. I'd expect the truth to be somewhere in between. Also, I have no idea what I'm talking about.

Tuesday, April 07, 2020

Easter's Starting To Look Like It Was A Pretty Good Suggestion

At some point the Trumpophobes are going to have to admit that, for a complete and total idiot, he's right an awful lot.

This Is Fine

Certainly not an impending sign of the boog if that's what you're thinking.

Jurecic and Wittes: "Trump's Allies Know He Has Failed"

This is such shit I couldn't even finish it.
As to whether Trump has succeeded or failed, I'm agnostic.
I'm not even sure how to measure success and failure in this case.
My current half-assed inclination is to compare our morality rate to other countries. But economic recovery will also be an important comparison.
Basically, I don't think anybody knows anything about these things, and most of the people writing about it--like these two--are partisan hacks. (One of them's from Lawfare. 'Nuff said, as we say.)
It's always easy to make a negative case of this kind, because hacks don't know what the real options were, nor how others might have done things differently. (Nor do they usually care.)
We've done a lot better than most other countries--but the left scrupulously ignores per capita mortality rates, focusing on total deaths, which don't provide a relevant comparison.
(Though: it also matters that our population density is lower than that of most other relevant countries, and that we had more time to react.)
Read more »

Obviously Lying Nurse Is Obviously Lying

The cringe...the cringe...
I'm not particularly adept at identifying liars merely from their demeanor. Lots of people think they're good at it, but they actually aren't. This woman, however...Jesus. I can barely watch her hysterical weeping lying bullshit. I mean start with the fact that she's recording herself weeping theatrically and then posting it to the interwebs...and go from there. Her story, to the extent I could understand it, isn't plausible. She was so repulsive I can't bear to watch it a second time. It's possible, of course, that there's something else amiss here...but on one watch, I'm gonna say: pants on fire.
   It's not a clean case, though, since I hadn't heard of this clip until I'd already heard people claiming she was lying. But, anyway: she is.

Monday, April 06, 2020

Incidentally: Is There Any Doubt How The Left Is Going To React

To Trump' having asked the Chinese woman whether she was from China?

If I Prayed

I'd pray for Boris Johnson.

Am I Hallucinating...

...or is Trump making sense at this presser?
He's even being reasonably articulate.
What gives?

[OK, there's the old Trump.]

Here's What People Who Have Skin In The Game Think About Our Trajectory

Dow closes up 1600 points.
But back in the realm of ideology: the MSM is still failing to acknowledge revisions to IHME model.

Hours After IHME Issues Very Positive Update, Neither NYT Nor WaPo Mention It; NYT Still Hysterical

I'm not going to screen shot them, because I'm done with this nonsense for awhile.
Similarly for CNN...but it's even less of a serious news organization than the other ones, ergo probably not worth mentioning.

Chinese Virus Virus Is Chinese: Geraghty Presses The Case For Wuhan Virus Coming From Chinese Biolab

It's interesting how these debates get refined. Initially the only two options mentioned were:
(a) Straight from bats via the Wuhan wet market
(b) Chinese bioweapon
Then the third option arose:
(c) Via Wuhan biolab...but not a bioweapon.
My weak inclination currently is to accept Geraghty's (c) hypothesis.
Incidentally, if that turns out to be true, it'll be fun watching progressives spin out new arguments against the locution 'Chinese virus.'

IHME Sharply Reduces Hospitalization Estimates

Huge Drop In New Hospitalizations In NY(C)?

link to chart.
Other link.

75% Drop In New Hospitalizations In NY? No Mention Of It on The Front Page Of The NYT

Again, I could be missing something.

One suggestion: could reflect unavailability of beds.

RSM: Coronavirus: The Wrong Numbers / And: Why Isn't the MSM Reporting On This?

Is this right?
Isn't the emerging evidence showing that the predictions have been way high? I mean...that in and of itself is fine. Nobody expects those making the predictions to work miracles. Nobody expects them to see the future.
But why isn't the media reporting on it?
Am I missing something? Is RSM missing something? I'm not sleeping and my brain isn't processing information well. McCain must be missing something and so must I.
There is absolutely no way for the numbers to be that wrong and for the media to not be reporting on it...right? Especially to the good side...right? That would be insane...right?
Things just aren't adding up. Are they? What am I missing?
Perhaps there's something important they aren't telling us--e.g. that they've acquired good evidence that Wuhan coronavirus infection doesn't produce immunity. I could imagine this information paralyzing them with panic--both because of how horrific that information would be, and because of the public reaction to it. 
If the predictions really are as wildly high/pessimistic as they appear to be, this would, I think, be something of a scandal...especially if, as we're told, the people developing the models aren't making their code etc. available. That alone might be sufficient to make us unjustified in accepting their numbers. 
But if the predictions really are as wildly off as they seem to be...and the media aren't reporting on it (as they seem not to be)...this is a scandal of monumental proportions.
Though now the administration seems to be singing from the same hymnal as the media.
Of course the predictions of the models include extremely wide variances...and it looks like the actual numbers fall within them. But that doesn't help much, since the wide variances aren't really being reported on.
Again, there's a weird political divide in play. Look on lefty sites, it's all about how catastrophic things are, mostly focused on NYC and on how everything about the Trump administration is despicable. The NYT simply cannot resist reporting about it on the front page every time Trump mentions Hydroxychloroquine approvingly. On the right, it's mostly about how things are looking overblown, probably intentionally to some degree, as a way to promote progressive ends like sinking Trump, and about how the economic damage threatens to be worse than the medical threat / benefits of shutting everything down.
Most of what I see in the media is anecdotal--stories about overwhelmed emergency rooms, lack of PPE, and individual cases of the relatively young and healthy--many of them doctors and nurses--who have succumbed to the virus. It does seem that we're hearing a lot about looming shortfalls...not a lot of numbers about current ones.
And again I'll note: the media is reporting on new deaths and total deaths and on how the U.S. is now the world leader in them. They ignore the fact that China is almost certainly lying, and cite them approvingly as having beaten the thing. They don't report on death rates per capita, and don't report that predictions are looking awfully high compared to actual numbers.
Then there was the breathless NYT story about how deaths were "almost certainly" being underreported...which seems unlikely to me. They might be underreported...but I doubt they are "almost certainly" underreported.
I'm "almost certainly" missing something, though. That's just got to be right.

Minnesota COVID-19 Cases Far Below Predictions

Possibly big if true.

Concerns About Rights In The Face Of The Pandemic

We're going to have to have a very serious discussion about this when the worst of the pandemic is over. We were already facing serious threats to e.g. the First Amendment before all this. VA Dems showed their authoritarian hand as soon as they took both houses of the General Assembly, threatening, among other things, to send out the National Guard to confiscate firearms. So they're also a threat to the Second Amendment. As I've said before: I wonder how long it'll be before we're told we have to quarter soldiers.
   At any rate--I'm willing to be a team player on this for now. But when it's over, the discussion has to be had. 

Adams: This Two Weeks Is "Going To Be Our Pearl Harbor," But We "Have The Power To Change The Trajectory"

It's interesting how much it helps to have an adult speak publicly and officially on the topic. At center stage we've Trump's bumbling, spastic inarticulateness, outshone in its ostentatious unhelpfulness only by the hysterical, partisan shittiness of the media. We'd be better off letting Pence, Adams, Fauci, Birx et al. speak to empty rooms. I still try to glance at the NYT because it's important to know what the ostensible "newspaper of record" is saying...but I'm beginning to wonder whether they've hired screenwriters to make their plague headlines even more overwrought. Contrast the histrionic headlines of the last few weeks with Adams's words. He's pulling no punches. There's no possible way to charge him with undue optimism. But he's not actively trying to panic people.
   On the bright (?) side, the media is so puerile, idiotic, irrational, partisan, petty and vindictive that it makes Trump look downright nearly-adequate. Which, antecedently, one might have thought impossible. Inter alia, they're still ignoring our far-better-than-average per capita mortality rate, preferring to hammer on the total number of deaths--which number tells only the worst-sounding part of the story.
   I still can't tell what's going on. Our area still seems to be doing alright...great, even, compared to what we're hearing. I'm skeptical about the country as a whole being on a trajectory toward a bloodbath. But I reckon we'll see.

"Let's Focus On The Next 30 Days, Not The Last"

I can't believe this has to be said.
There'll be plenty of time for the New York Times and CNN to Orange Man Bad until the cows come home once we've gotten through this.

Sunday, April 05, 2020

Cuomo Hasn't Accepted Remington's Offer To Build Ventilators?

That would seem to indicate that it's not as much of an emergency as he's claimed.

Does "Common-Good" Constitutionalism Reveal The Dangers Of Any Non-Originalist Approach To The Constitution?

Alex Berezow: Stop The Panic

Behold The Contemptuous Self-Absorption Of Our Betters

There's no sense even replying to / criticizing this kind of stuff anymore, is there?

Saturday, April 04, 2020

Taking A Break From The Batpox Crisis

I need a break.
And there are only so many ways to say I don't know.

Global Warming Hysteria Is To Blame; Fortunately, That's So B.P.

Global warming hysteria played a major role in turning conservatives off of alleged expertise--though it was only part of what did it.
On the bright side, I'm inclined to think that such Before Plague nonsense will fade into the background now that we've blown at least $2.2 trillion and the economy is in the crapper.
After all: we only have ten years left to implement the GND...and that's not going to happen now.

Codevilla On COVID-19, Bureaucracy, Expertise, and Democracy

I find this guy interesting and much of his stuff extremely thought-provoking.
He articulates a perspective here that's common among conservatives.
I find it plausible, but I'm torn between the two poles of the debate.
In general, I've swung around more in the direction of conservative thinking on such matters. But it's a tentative swing.
My position is still a fairly firm I have no clue what the hell is going on.

No Acquired Immunity?

People have been dismissing this. You know the reasons. But it would explain some things. More in the morning.

Friday, April 03, 2020

Fauci: Relax "Social Distancing" Only When There Are "No New Cases, No Deaths"

   My layperson's view is that, if Fauci is right, we might as well start relaxing the measures now and prepare to deal with the consequences. It seems--again, as a layperson--that what he said is nuts. Does he think we can keep the economy shut down because there's one active case? Or one death per month? I suppose his response would be that there can't be one active case or one death per month--it'll have to be none or a lot. Which could be true. But then the answer would seem to be: ok, we'll take a lot.
   I'm not encouraging anyone to believe me. But in the nightmare world in which I have to make the decision, there is no f*cking way I'm going to watch the economy grind to a complete halt. We'd be dead anyway when the food ran out. Not that we'd let it get that far. People--regular people, anyway...maybe not academicians and suchlike--would simply go back to work and take their chances. Nobody's going to try to stop 'em. Especially if the pattern holds up and the people dying are mainly old, infirm, or have other serious underlying conditions.
   Through most of human history, people faced more danger than we'd be facing from this virus, and they didn't huddle in their houses.
   No serious public argument has been made for the conclusion that--basically--we all need to sit in our houses and starve rather than taking the risk and getting on with life. I'm willing to listen. But even the worst case scenario is about 2 million deaths in the U.S. That's horrible. But if someone can show that that's worse than complete economic collapse, they'd better come up with the argument and right quick. Because if we have to take the plunge anyway, I suppose we might as well do it now before the economic toll is any worse.
   Perhaps Fauci merely meant relax all "social distancing" only when there are no more cases. That's fine. Maybe we have to stay 6' away from each other and wear masks for a year. But there is absolutely, positively no f*cking way on God's green earth that we're going to keep the economy shut down until Fall, especially not over this virus. If it had a 75% mortality rate, we'd be facing a much, much tougher problem. But not different in principle. People would just take more precautions and get back to work.
   Ok. Fauci's suggestion sounds so utterly daft that I can only conclude that I must not understand him, or I'm ignorant about some relevant facts.
   As a footnote, it's entirely unacceptable that he is receiving threats. Apparently the right is going after him and the left is going after Birx. The lunatics on both sides are despicable.

Scott Adams: When We Get Back To Work, We'll Have to Do It Smart

Low-risk people first. Currently that means people who are:
(a) Young
and probably people who are:
(b) Not overweight
I'd add something that currently seems of a degree of importance between (a) and (b):
(c) Female
Needless to say, feminists and the rest of the left will make up stories about how it's misogynistic no matter what we do. Regardless of whether we recommend that women go back first or second, it'll be misogynistic.
But feminism, having gone insane, is not now something you should pay attention to when things matter.
Also there's those receptor-thingies in yo' lungs...but now we gettin' fancy...
Imagine the system we'd develop if we had ten years to figure it out. It'd certainly be better and more complex than Everybody go home now except for the grocers and mailmen...
If you gave business people some options other than shutting down, I'm sure you'd get some pretty good solutions. Say I need a new solenoid for the Smithmobile. I go down to Napa. The door is covered by plastic. The guy inside has a mask on. If I have a mask on, he agrees to do business with me. I say "I need a solenoid for my 1972 Nova." He disappears, comes back, wipes it down with disinfecting wipes and slides it under the flappy part of the barrier. I pay with Google Pay.
Well, easy for me to say, I guess.
Probably harder to implement correctly.

Scott Adams: Somebody's Not Being Straight With Us About Numbers of PPE, Ventilators; Trump's Decision-Making Has Been Pretty Good

ca. 14:00
I'm inclined to agree with the first point and more-or-less suspend judgment on the second.
With respect to the first point, Adams argues that everybody pads their numbers to insure that they don't wind up with too few resources.
I haven't finished listening yet, but I'd add: not only are hospitals likely to pad their numbers a bit (that is: say they need more equipment than they actually do), but governors are likely to pad them further.

Weak Jobs Report???

How could this be?????

How To Increase Lunch Capacity

LUNG capacity.
Though I've also been increasing lunch capacity...]
I've been doing this.

"Don't Believe The COVID-19 Models: That's Not What They're For"

I do not understand this.
Is he an instrumentalist?
Or is this because the Trump administration seems to have accepted a model and publicized its output?
Models were good when the Imperial College model was front and center. Are they bad now? Is the suggestion that this one is too pessimistic? Wasn't the other one worse?
I have no idea what's going on.

Trump: Fewer False Claims Last Presser

Congratulations, Mr. President!
   That scarf thing is representative of his bullshitting. There was no reason to say it, I have little doubt that it's false...but he was just sort of on a roll. He tends to try to make things conversational and to do it he fills in the airtime between the actual points he has to make with these kinds of curlicues. That's annoying in a normal person, but it can be absolutely disastrous in a president.
  Oh well. This isn't the worst thing he's said. La Resistance will screech about it for awhile, but it's certainly less bad than the coordinated effort by the Powers That Be to convince us all that we didn't need face-coverings at all. FWTW.

The Most Important Thing Is To Find Some Way To Blame Trump

Here's one more in a ceaseless torrent of attempts. When the truth comes out, it'll likely turn out that this was some kind of reorganization or routine reshuffling or something started by Obama or whatever. There'll be a retraction or correction at the bottom of page 33.
   Almost none of us know how well the administration has performed. Almost none of us have any inkling how, say, a Clinton administration would have done things differently. I'm happy for Trump to take whatever blame he deserves. I've taken a break from watching his pressers because his spastic, unfocused BS makes me even more concerned than I already am.
   But I still feel approximately like I did at the beginning of this: I'm not ecstatic that Trump's in charge. But overall I don't see that this is substantively worse than a Clinton administration. I think this is a worst-case scenario for his presidency: people who voted for him basically recognized that he'd do way less harm to the country under normal conditions than another Dem administration, and bet on there not being a world-historical catastrophe. That bet didn't work out. Now we're stuck with his apparently bumbling. On the other side is the insane progressive cultural superstructure, including the rabidly progressive media who, inter alia, think it's more important to score points for the "resistance" and fling bogus charges of racism than it is to inform us about what's going on and ask reasonable questions. I continue to think that said superstructure is a bigger, more long-term threat than Trump. But it's certainly not as clear as it used to be. If we'd had something like ordinary smooth-sailing, I'm inclined to think that Trump would have turned out to be a big win for the country--hard as it is for me to believe I'm saying that. But this is the kind of disaster that seems tailor-made for him to screw up. Of course we can't tell because most of what we're getting is MSM/DNC TDS PR... Especially from the NYT, which seems dedicated to the twin aims of (a) pumping up hysteria mostly as a means to torpedo Trump and (b) expressing its outrage that this could happen to the very greatest and most important city on Earth.
   So, while I'm not what you'd call optimistic about all this, I honestly can't tell what's going on nor how to think about it. The media issues a nonstop stream of hysterical negativity with the tacit conclusion This is Trump's fault lurking in the background. I suspect that, were Obama still president, the tone would be more in the opposite direction--Behold his heroic response...Death toll still much lower than the flu...At least we're not Italy... But perhaps not. Now, of course, we have the House Dems helpfully firing up Impeachment III: The Impeachening… So this is gonna be great.

John Kenny: Some Coronavirus Guidelines

Don't Trust Zoom. Zoom Is Assho

Imagine The WuFlu were Killing Mostly Women And They Published An Op-Ed Titled "When It Comes To Survival, Women Are The Weaker Sex"

I don't care about such crap. I merely point out the double standard.

Thursday, April 02, 2020

More Bad Wuhan Virus Numbers

Not good.
Unfortunately, it looks like the left's catastrophism about this was more right than the right's nonchalance/skepticism.
   Re: Italy: '7,000-9000' deaths per day is obviously a typo. He means that they're suffering 700-900/day, obviously. Which sucks enough ass as it is.

Weak-Ass CNN "Fact"-Check

Trump bullshits. But "fact"-checks like these push me toward continuing to think of him as the lesser evil.

Only 1.8% Of COVID-19 Deaths In NYC Are Without An Underlying Condition?

Some day, the nature of this disease will all seem so clear to people that they might not be able to really understand how baffling it all is to us now. Of course there are people now who understand this about 100x better than we internet kibitzers do.

Spain: No Increase In All-Cause Mortality Rate?

So this is a Reddit link, if you object to such a thing: Reddit link.
   There's been significant speculation about this, to the effect that:
(a) the people who are dying would mostly be dying soon anyway,
(b) the measures we've implemented have cut down so much on things like flu and car wrecks that terms of total deaths, we may come out on the upside.
This is all so freaking crazy.
I'm utterly clueless.